Bigfoot and the Nogin Dome - Fiberglass RV


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Old 09-10-2009, 05:54 PM   #1
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When I was in Quartzite last year, Oliver had a show of their wares.
I forget what size Oliver I was in but they had the same noggin dome as does my Casita 17.
Had Casita not had that bump I would not have purchased it (your personal height and the inside height of your egg notwithstanding, head room is very important to me)
So anyway, the Oliver sales lady (I assume the owners wife) was telling someone about the noggin dome, "it increases the structural strength".
Perhaps your intuition tells you she was right but if not, as a mechanical engineer, I can assure you it does!
The Oliver and the casita have an extreme amount of vertical load carrying ability due to the vertical noggin dome.. perhaps even an increase in horizontal stress capabilities.

But..

How much of that strength is necessary?
Do Bigfoots have a noggin dome or a flat roof?
Do escapes have a noggin dome or a flat roof?

Do escapes or bigfoots suffer stress and fatigue cracks over time with a 100 lb air conditioner vibrating and bouncing on a flat roof?

This question goes arm in arm with an obvious truth: if you extend the noggin dome out to the very edge as does Escape it increases the room inside substantially.
It increases the height of overhead cabinets.
It takes away one of he worst design features of the Casita, the LOW (too low) overhead stove vent.

your thoughts?
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Old 09-10-2009, 06:19 PM   #2
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So anyway, the Oliver sales lady (I assume the owners wife) was telling someone about the noggin dome...your thoughts?
Maybe she owns the company (too)...
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Old 09-10-2009, 06:38 PM   #3
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Hi: ronsmith100... Escape has a double noggin dome where the A/C unit is. The front to back one and then a side to side one under the A/C unit + extra wood supports glassed into the roof. I think "Our Escape Hatch" was the first to have a roof mount air unit. Before that they put a wall/window unit above the fridge. The Dometic Brisk Air 5700 B.T.U. unit we have weighs around 60 lbs. I think
Alf S. North shore of Lake Erie
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Old 09-10-2009, 06:55 PM   #4
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The Bigfoot 5th does not have a center noggin dome, it does not need one for ceiling height. It has an arched roof, at least it's suppose to...ours not so much. So the answer to "Do escapes or bigfoots suffer stress and fatigue cracks over time with a 100 lb air conditioner vibrating and bouncing on a flat roof?" is for our 5th wheel "Yes the AC caused damage."

The reason we know this is we have receipts from the past owners citing AC problems more than once and the services to "fix" them, the roof is flatter than it should be, and the AC is gone, removed by the last owner because he "Didn't need it."

I don't know how much of a problem this is with other Bigfoot 5th or the other models.
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Old 09-10-2009, 07:49 PM   #5
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Ron, BF has a curved roof (all models) and I have had a low profile Dometic AC unit on for over 10 years on our CB17 and 2 years on our 2007 25RQ with out any issues at all. We are original owners on both. I would recommend that you do not climb on the roof for any reason......I have no idea why some models of RV have ladders.....oh wait I do, it's to hold another ladder!
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Old 09-10-2009, 10:42 PM   #6
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I would recommend that you do not climb on the roof for any reason.
I have no idea why some models of RV have ladders.....oh wait I do, it's to hold another ladder!
I totally agree with both statements, the second being too funny!
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Old 09-11-2009, 08:32 AM   #7
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... I would recommend that you do not climb on the roof for any reason......
Why?
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Old 09-11-2009, 10:16 AM   #8
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Hi: ronsmith100... Escape has a double noggin dome where the A/C unit is. The front to back one and then a side to side one under the A/C unit + [b]extra wood supports glassed into the roof. I think "Our Escape Hatch" was the first to have a roof mount air unit. Before that they put a wall/window unit above the fridge. The Dometic Brisk Air 5700 B.T.U. unit we have weighs around 60 lbs. I think
Alf S. North shore of Lake Erie
That's what I was looking for.
There would almost "have" to be something to absorb the dynamic pounding vs just the static loading.


So I may get an AC after all now that they have such a low profile and I know that the roof is reinforced.

Thanks

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Old 09-11-2009, 10:22 AM   #9
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Maybe she owns the company (too)...
I have been out of the California Community College system too long and my lack of any recent diversity training is showing.

Shame on me.
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Old 09-11-2009, 10:26 AM   #10
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I would say it's just reality: Many women own or co-own businesses. So it's not about something people like to gently mock, such as diversity training, as much as just.... real, honest-to-goodness life

As a capable female, it's just hard to see that sort of thing go by without at least a little comment, although I do try to keep it to a minimum.

Carry on!

Raya
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Old 09-11-2009, 12:01 PM   #11
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Why?
Steve, my understanding is though they do reinforce roof's these days, they really still are not made for weight. I am sure many a rv sales person has told new owners its ok, but have you ever seen an rv taken apart? As wonderfully made as some are, they still don't have the strength to hold up to a humans body weight time after time and not give ( a little at a time) at another point in the structure. And those stupid ladders! Make me crazy. They give people a false sense of it's ok! I am sure there will be others that say it's ok, so come to your own opinion. But I know several people in the industry that say don't do it.

This is not to say you are gonna crash threw the roof! It's just saying that each time you put that kinda weight up there you are creating damage.
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Old 09-11-2009, 08:19 PM   #12
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Steve, my understanding is though they do reinforce roof's these days, they really still are not made for weight. I am sure many a rv sales person has told new owners its ok, but have you ever seen an rv taken apart? As wonderfully made as some are, they still don't have the strength to hold up to a humans body weight time after time and not give ( a little at a time) at another point in the structure. And those stupid ladders! Make me crazy. They give people a false sense of it's ok! I am sure there will be others that say it's ok, so come to your own opinion. But I know several people in the industry that say don't do it.

This is not to say you are gonna crash threw the roof! It's just saying that each time you put that kinda weight up there you are creating damage.
Thanks for your comments Robin but I fail to see the basis for your conclusion that all trailer roofs "do not have the strength to hold up to a human's body". And consistent loading will in time weaken the roof structure equally confuses me. On the contrary, I've seen quite a few Bigfoots (late manufacture) that have experienced a good amount of foot traffic on the roof without sustaining any damage. I don't know the exact structure of the roof (I would really like to know though.) but it seems plenty strong to me.

I recall Reese stating some time ago that the earlier version of their Escape 17 was not strong enough to carry the weight of a roof mounted AC. Since then the roof was modified to carry the extra load. I wonder if he could also comment on what is being discussed here and whether the new design is strong enough to also handle a person walking on the roof.

BTW, Does anyone have pictures of Bigfoot trailers under construction? Again, I would really like to know how they are put together.
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Old 09-11-2009, 08:21 PM   #13
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Hi Steve. Robin has articulated my thoughts on this.....leave roof maintenance to the pros in a proper RV shop environment and for your own personal safety, stay off the roof!!

Happy trails......
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Old 09-11-2009, 09:36 PM   #14
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BTW, Does anyone have pictures of Bigfoot trailers under construction? Again, I would really like to know how they are put together.
The closest picture I know of is when Bill Abbay removed his roof vent and took a picture of the cross-section of the hole.

Link to Bill Abbay's photos. Scroll down to the 5th one.
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