That danged Beltline trim!!! - Dutchmen Owners

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Old 01-22-2017, 02:38 AM   #1
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That danged Beltline trim!!!

Pirate here,

Finally, finally, got the trim I need to replace the beltline trim peeling off my 2014 Voltage Epic III 3800 Toyhauler.

I used information provided as answer to my request for info here on the forum. I have two sets of the wrong trim. One I am returning and one I am struck with.

So I thought I would share what I now have and information on how I am doing the replacement to make the trim last a whole lot longer than two years!

I went to Windish RV in Denver, CO where we bought the RV and asked the Parts guy what I needed. He ordered what Keystone said was the right stuff. Nope, instead of 1” trim it was ” trim. So he worked with Keystone again and found that the original beltline trim for our 2014 RV was obsolete. Really? Fortunately he was able to make contact with the right person and get me another box of trim. This time the trim fits perfectly.

The trim comes in a box, a roll of the trim 60 ft long. I bought an entire box as I didn’t think it would hurt to have a little extra. The correct trim is:

Keystone:
PN 370564 TRIM SCREW COVER FLEXIBLE BLACK 60ft $0.41/ft $24.60

The pic below shows how much better the new trim is than the original:

As you can see the new trim hooks over the upper and lower “lip” of the aluminum trim and stays put. Looking at the original trim. I have no idea how it was supposed to stay on.

Along with the trim, other suggested using black end caps available on eBay. Here’s that info:

I ordered 3 sets of 10, all 30 came in one sealed bag. I think I need 24, so have a few spares.

Looking at the aluminum beltline strip I noted that Dutchman put screws every 6” the length of the aluminum.

Since every section of my trim shrank at each end. And remembering that expansion or shrinkage is always denoted as inches per inch. So the 74” piece shrank more than an inch. ”+ at either end. So I thought that if I put an End Cap with screw on each end, and then another screw every 12 inches. That would greatly reduce shrinkage at the ends, because there is a screw retaining the trim within 12” of the End Cap.

Here is a slightly fuzzy pic showing the amount of shrinkage on the first piece of trim I replaced. That being passenger side, from the garage entry door to the ramp end of the trailer.

It took me two fingers and 10 seconds to pull this entire piece of trim off. Yeah, parked since September there are several pieces that have fallen off an litter the RV pad!

Before I go further, I’d like to share some of the tools I used for replacing the trim:

Yup, good ‘ol sheet metal shears. They make a very clean cut across the trim and can be used to trim the corners to fit under the End Caps if needed.

Yup, a good old adjustable square. I set the angle length at 2”, just for good measure. I used the 12” rule to lay out the distance between new screws and placed the device level square side on top of the new trim and used the closest ” mark as the center for drilling a screw hole. More in a minute.

Above is a hard rubber roller I purchased for another project, but found it very useful for this one.
Since the new trim is on a roll, in a cardboard box, I started at one end. Put the trim over the aluminum trim starting at one end. I snapped about 6” over the aluminum so that I could slide it some an make sure it stayed at the end of the aluminum rail. I then held an End Cap over the new black trim and drilled the center with a 1/8” drill, Then used a black sheet metal screw to hold the End Cap and the new black trim to the side of the trailer.
From here I would snap about 15” of the new black trim over the Aluminum trim. Then use the hard rubber roller to smooth the trim working from the End Cap. Just makes things look a little better, assures both the top and bottom of the new black trim are snapped over the Aluminum trim.
Now I used the adjustable square rule to measure 12” from the center of the End Cap screw, then used the square the other way and drilled a hole ” down or at the center of the new black trim.
A tip: I set the drill all the way into the chuck so that the minimum length of drill bit extended from the chuck. I did this because I have no idea what I might be drilling into, but the screws holding the Aluminum Trim to the trailer are 1” long. I had about 1 1/8” extending from the chuck.
So here’s the End Cap in place, the trim snapped over the Aluminum trim for about 15” and ready for the first screw.

Here you can see that I’ve installed screws every 12”.

And here’s a close up of the screws I’m using.

I used a hand Phillips screwdriver to install the screws as I have just tightened them enough to have the washer tight to the trim, the screw tight to the washer, but not smashing the new black trim.

And here is that first piece of new trim installed and complete. Some dimpling of the new black trim. But seems a little difficult to avoid. Rolling the trim as I installed it does seem to make for a better finished look.

Above the new black trim you can see where some of the black graphic is missing. It peeled off with the old trim. It appears that Dutchman used a bead of some clear sealant along the top of the trim. Probably an effort to keep it from peeling off…yeah right! I will cover this with a bead of “black silicone”. Not black RTV, but silicone. I have learned in the last two years that “silicone” is very easy to smooth and clean up with Mineral Spirits. Very simple. I buy it in the tube that fits a caulking gun.

I got the screws for the end caps and for the black trim at my local Ace Hardware.

I did two long sections in about an hour. Figuring the process out, working on the shady side of the trailer in 37 degree weather. I think I’m smarter than to work outside in that cold, but decided to see how it worked out. Works just fine!
Got questions? Lemme know!

Pirate
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Old 01-22-2017, 11:06 AM   #2
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Good write up!

Now what is real funny, and just goes to show how incompetent Dutchmen is...

Airstream has used a insert trim for years. I had a 1975 that had a 3/4" insert trim. It came with end caps and screws. You probably only need to fasten the trim at the ends unless the runs are in excess of 20 feet or so.

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Old 01-22-2017, 11:44 AM   #3
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Very nice write up.
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Old 01-22-2017, 06:22 PM   #4
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Pirate, thanks for taking the time to post all this helpful info--especially the pics! No doubt this info will come in very handy for many here at some point and time.
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Old 01-23-2017, 02:18 AM   #5
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Thanks all, I'm always very interested in providing enough information so that others can get the task done themselves. Takes a bit of time...but that's OK.

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Old 01-23-2017, 01:02 PM   #6
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Awesome post, I just ordered the end caps and sent a message to windish! Every time i call them i get a recording at their parts department, I'd imagine they are pretty busy. I've been hunting for the correct trim on and off for about a year! Mine drives me crazy I'm kinda weird about things like this. I can also see on my decals where the movement of the trim has started to pull them, i'm planning on running a utility knife very easy along the top of the existing trim where the decals are to keep them from peeling when I take the original off.
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Old 01-23-2017, 03:03 PM   #7
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You need to make contact with Andrew Scheihing at Windish RV.

Here's his e-mail info: ascheihing@windishrv.com

He's in the Parts Dept at Windish RV and is responsive to e-mail. Feel free to use me as a reference on the trim. Stuart Phelps.

Andrew can also arrange dropshipment to your address.

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Old 01-23-2017, 03:44 PM   #8
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Pirate,

Thank you very much for all of the information, I just sent Andrew a message and ordered the end caps off of E-bay. I'm excited to get this project done, this trim thing has annoyed me for far toooooo long!
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Old 01-23-2017, 06:32 PM   #9
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Finally a part number to replace the trim on the Voltages. I think this problem has been kicked around for a couple of years here.
Thanks Pirate, Windish RV is going to be selling quite a pit of this stuff because of your great write-up.
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Old 01-23-2017, 09:38 PM   #10
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Dang...I should have offered to sell the information to interested members. How am I going to afford my Lime Diet Coke now?

Rats!!

But very glad you're finding the info useful. Took me two years to find the info myself. But finally!!!

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Old 01-24-2017, 04:12 PM   #11
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I'm currently working with Andrew placing my order, I ordered 2 cases for a total of 120'. I want to make sure I have enough to get me through my learning curve! The point is, if anyone needs some I'll have extra or if anyone just needs a small section I'll share for whatever the cost to ship to you is. I appreciate all the information and help this forum continues to share.
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Old 09-10-2018, 07:16 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by Pirate View Post
Thanks all, I'm always very interested in providing enough information so that others can get the task done themselves. Takes a bit of time...but that's OK.

Pirate
Pirate - getting ready to pull the trigger on this. How did you handle the very short pieces of trim between access doors, etc? Did you still use the end caps?

Thanks!
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Old 09-10-2018, 03:37 PM   #13
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Don,
Yes, I used end caps for everywhere there was an end. I did cut new pieces for the short sections. Here's more info:

The caps for the ends: RV Molding: RV Exterior Trim & Outside Window Trim

The screws I put in through the end caps and then every 12". I used a "finish screw" from my local Ace Hardware. Black with a black finish washer mounted on each screw. I believe they are #10 screws 1.25" long. But I still have a few and can check if you like.

I still have a bunch of the molding left. I sure don't need it just sitting in a box in my shop taking up room! I ordered the correct molding through Windish RV in Denver. The PN is 370564 been long enough I think that is a PN from the manufacturer.
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Old 05-25-2019, 06:26 PM   #14
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Don,
Yes, I used end caps for everywhere there was an end. I did cut new pieces for the short sections. Here's more info:

The caps for the ends: RV Molding: RV Exterior Trim & Outside Window Trim

The screws I put in through the end caps and then every 12". I used a "finish screw" from my local Ace Hardware. Black with a black finish washer mounted on each screw. I believe they are #10 screws 1.25" long. But I still have a few and can check if you like.

I still have a bunch of the molding left. I sure don't need it just sitting in a box in my shop taking up room! I ordered the correct molding through Windish RV in Denver. The PN is 370564 been long enough I think that is a PN from the manufacturer.
Pirate, was it all metal behind the trim? I found black finish screws, but they are self drilling. Also, that seems long for screws for that...is there something behind the metal track that warranted screws that long?

Thanks in advance!
Don
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Old 05-26-2019, 04:44 AM   #15
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Hello Don,
Yes, there is an aluminum strip behind the belt line trim. It has a lip on the top and the bottom that the trim snaps over. In fact I found it easiest to start the trim and then shove it along, keeping it going over the metal trim until I had it all covered, then cut and snap the end over the metal.

If you're using the original screw holes, then you don't need self drilling screws. I ran a strip of blue masking tap along the top of the aluminum trim and marked it with the location of the screw holes. I recall they are pretty well centered in the aluminum trim.

I used...I think..."finish screws" that have a domed washer already on them. Gives a very nice finish. I believe the screws I used were 1" long. They grip the aluminum trim and the OSB behind the fibreglas exterior siding.

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Old 05-26-2019, 03:12 PM   #16
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Yep, saw the finish screws just didn't know if the 1-1/2" were really necessary unless you had found something during disassembly that made you go that route. Appreciate the info and the tip on the strip of tape to use original holes. Perfect. Thank you!
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Old 05-26-2019, 03:17 PM   #17
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I don't remember if Pirate pulled the Aluminum strip but I did. I cleaned under it and added a run of clear Silicone and then screwed it down.
Just a preventive measure against any seepage into the screw holes.
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Old 05-26-2019, 03:17 PM   #18
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I don't remember if Pirate pulled the Aluminum strip but I did. I cleaned under it and added a run of clear Silicone and then screwed it down.
Just a preventive measure against any seepage into the screw holes.
Yeppers. Was planning to do the same!
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Old 05-26-2019, 03:36 PM   #19
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You'll be lucky if you don't find a rusty screw or three when you do.


I had a water intrusion along the front door some time after I changed the trim and added the end caps. Looked all over and tore everything apart. Ended up being a cap that was cracked and allowing water to get in. I'd seen that cracked cap but dismissed it, like we do, but a replacement and more akum putty solved that problem.
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Old 05-26-2019, 05:35 PM   #20
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I don't remember if Pirate pulled the Aluminum strip but I did. I cleaned under it and added a run of clear Silicone and then screwed it down.
Just a preventive measure against any seepage into the screw holes.
You should use the putty when you run screws. Just a thought.
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