Fourwinds Hurricane

Often when someone contacts you about a fault on their American motorhome you ask the appropriate questions, analyse the answers then come up with an idea of what you think it might be.  Most of the time I am spot on but on this occasion, I was a country mile out.

An owner of a Fourwinds Hurricane Motorhome contacted me and asked if I had had any problems with windscreens coming out at the top edge on the driver’s side.  The answer was “yes”, I then went on to explain how the aluminium frame that is fitted across the front of the vehicle to which the TVs are attached along with the overhead lockers has a tendency to break, leaving a lack of rigidity across the front of the vehicle.  This then allows the front fibreglass cap to flex and the screens to come loose and then becoming removed from the screen rubbers.  The owner seemed to be convinced along with myself that my theory was correct.

Fourwinds Hurricane Motorhome aluminium frame

This shows the aluminium frame

Following our telephone conversation, the owner arranged to drop the vehicle off at our workshops in Northampton and leave it with us.

When we drove the vehicle into the workshop some days later I was still convinced that the frame along the top of the cap had broken.  It wasn’t too long into the job when I realised that it was not going to be a job but a project.  The main cause of the windscreen coming loose was not the aluminium frame it was both the front wings were rotten, this caused the front cap to lose its rigidity allowing the windscreens to come out of the rubbers.

The first thing we needed to do was to remove the front cap from the vehicle which would allow us to peel back the outer fibreglass covering of the two wings.

Fourwinds Hurricane Motorhome front cap

Removal of the front cap

Fourwinds Hurricane Motorhome front cap removed

The front cap removed

Fourwinds Hurricane Motorhome removing fibreglass skin

Removing the fibreglass skin to reveal the extent of the problem

With the front wing structure exposed the extent of the damage could be seen.

Next step is to work out how the vehicle got into this state.  The first thing to be seen was that the windows had leaked rainwater behind the fibreglass and the wood behind it had absorbed in the water.

Looking at the roof.


Fourwinds Hurricane Motorhome roof

Revealing the roof structure

Fourwinds Hurricane Motorhome damage

The water was coming in from the roof on the right-hand side

Looking at the roof on the left-hand side.

Fourwinds Hurricane Motorhome damage

Looking at the roof on the left-hand side water was also entering the motorhome

Now we had worked out how the damage had occurred all we needed to do now was repair the damage. The first stage is to replace the rotten wood.

Fourwinds Hurricane Motorhome damage
Fourwinds Hurricane Motorhome damage

This would then allow the front wings to be attached correctly to the firewall of the motorhome.

Fourwinds Hurricane Motorhome damage

Fourwinds Hurricane Motorhome

Once both the front wings were attached correctly the front cap was ready to be refitted.

Once you get the front cab square to the two sides and roof you can attach the front cap back onto the vehicle so as it will resemble an American RV motorhome.

One thing many of you may not realise is that the front cap must fit exactly onto the roof and both wings.  This process took two people four hours to complete this stage of the repair.  If you do not get the cap EXACT the windscreens will not fit, this is because the front cap has no strength whatsoever and can easily be fitted out of true.

re-fit windscreen re-fit windscreen

Then comes the tricky part the windscreens need to be refitted, this is when you know how good you are. If the front cap fitting isn’t correct then this phase will become impossible without bodging up the screen fitment.

e-fit the side window and mirrors e-fit the side window and mirrors

window re-fit

As you can see the extra time taken has paid dividends

The next process is to re-fit the side window and mirrors.

re-fit mirrors

Once the outside is done the attention then went to the inside.

dashboard refitdashboard refit dashboard refit

The dashboard then needed to be re-fitted and all the switches tested.

One last thing was to road test the vehicle and make sure the speedo worked and that we hadn’t created any excess noise.

If you have any questions about the above case study don’t hesitate to call LAS Motorhomes on 01604 861999.