What EGG brand is the highest quality? - Fiberglass RV


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Old 10-26-2014, 12:01 AM   #1
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Name: Yonny Yonson
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What EGG brand is the highest quality?

I know this is a totally loaded question. I realize that quality comes in many forms. I guess what I am asking here is... from your point of view which brand of "egg" camper is made from the best materials for: structural rigidity, and rot resistance. I have seen some "all aluminum" campers out there (not fiberglass) and I am impressed that they simply cannot rot and yet are super light-weight. I really don't want to be working on dry rot. If there is a leak that is one thing. If it leads to soaking of wood and mold and, and, and... that's another.
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Old 10-26-2014, 01:19 AM   #2
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Welcome John to the group. All moulded FBG trailers are pretty much dry rot resistant over all. Without regular maintenance and a watchfull eye for leaks you can end up with a bad floor, not an easy fix. Most of the threads I've read of a bad floor came from a trailer that has been sitting for a long time. As far as quality, if you think of it there are a whole lot of 40 year old moulded trailers still being used. Says alot for the quality of fiberglass alone. Every builder has their own idea of quality and what is best. You have to do your own homework to decide what is best in your mind and where your going to travel. I went with a Casita SD 17 over a Scamp 16 (same side dinette layout) because the Casita had a flat door and they were both in my price range. Read to many threads about issues with the curved door seal and handle. Didn't want to deal with either of them. I avoid snow like the plague as I grew up in snow country so a four season unit is not needed. The Escape, Oliver and the Nest (in R & D) seem to be thought of as the higher end units.
As far as an all aluminum trailer I haven't heard of one. Frames yes but not a whole trailer. Unless it's moulded it's going to have a bunch of seams in it, all subject to leaks. Not saying ours can't and don't get leaks on occation but much less likely because of the design.
Not sure if you're going to get any rock solid answer to your questions. We all have our own opinions and I'm sure many others will chime in to you. Just my two cents, good luck to you.
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Old 10-26-2014, 01:37 AM   #3
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No structural wood in the Lil Snoozy to rot. I had read about an all aluminum trailer owner complaining about how it echos inside, transfers heat & cold into the trailer.
Dave & Paula
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Old 10-26-2014, 01:44 AM   #4
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Smile Fiberglass vs Bolts/rivets

I think the brands that use as much fiberglass as possible are the best. That means the interior components are fiberglassed or bonded to the shell instead of bolting, riveting, etc.
Fasteners produce point stresses, can become carriers of heat out and cold in. I have heard of condensation forming on them and dripping, whereas being bonded, the interiors, seats, cabinets, become part of the structure of the rig.
It does seem that people are happy with their fastener brands.
The sailboat I owned was made with all the interior glassed in. Come to think of it, bolts through the hull would be a bad idea.
It is nice to have a choice, but OTOH, you have to make a choice.
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Old 10-26-2014, 07:26 AM   #5
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IMHO there are other things that need to be addressed rather than quality being number one. I wouldn't care if an all molded towable was absolutely bullet proof if the layout didn't suit my needs or my tug couldn't tow it or I couldn't afford it.

All towables of any build type or any brand will all have maintenance issues. Ignore that and that's where problems arise.

My brother purchased a huge Aluma Lite 5th wheel, paid a pretty penny for it. All aluminum framework. One year later the entire roof had to be removed due to seams leaking and water running down between the walls. Needlessly to say, my bro was NOT a happy camper.
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Old 10-26-2014, 07:28 AM   #6
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I don't know for sure, and could speculate but since the only FGRV I have ever really looked over closely is my 1988 Scamp it is the only one I am confident to talk about. I am amazed at how well it has held up for the last 26, soon to be 27 years. I assume you are in the market for new, and therefore can buy what you want most anytime (with production lead time figured in of course). Now, if we are talking old used FGRVs then I consider them to be in the same class as old tractors & equipment. I have often said that it is MUCH more important to access the individual piece of equipment's condition and usage than whoever made it many, many years ago. That and of course parts availability. I appreciate that you can call Scamp and buy parts for something they made 26, or even 36 years ago.
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Old 10-26-2014, 07:45 AM   #7
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Fiberglass is a wonderful material because it is waterproof. It gains strength if you add a core materiel between two layers of fiberglass. The material you choose for a core adds value. In catamarans a foam core adds floatation. End grain balsa adds strength. Plywood is cheap and adds meat to add (screw on) cabinetry.

Most egg campers lack insulation--which I value more than anything. I often travel in the winter and I wanted a camper that would save me hotel bills.

Thermal windows make a huge difference for warmth and reduced condensation. These cone at a cost. If you three season camp , save your money.

Material include more than the shell. I don't like particle board. I don't like staples. I don't like hose and prefer PEX tubing.

I like stainless steel sinks and stoves because they are easier to clean and don't deteriorate. I wish I had both.

My final conclusion was that if you want quality you have to build it yourself or else modify what you buy to suit yourself. You won't get everything you want unless you have an unlimited budget. But you can start with something you like and make improvements.


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Old 10-26-2014, 07:57 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Donna D. View Post
<snip>

My brother purchased a huge Aluma Lite 5th wheel, paid a pretty penny for it. All aluminum framework. One year later the entire roof had to be removed due to seams leaking and water running down between the walls. Needlessly to say, my bro was NOT a happy camper.

Tell him to spray the roof with U-Pol bed liner. It can be color tinted and works great.


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Old 10-26-2014, 08:24 AM   #9
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I have a Scamp which has so far delivered 10years of flawless service while remaining in excellent condition. I have rescued dozens of fiberglass trailers over the years, of various brands, most over 30years old.
I own and will keep my Scamp.
That being said, I must agree that the question is "loaded".
You are asking for an objective answer to a question which can only be answered subjectively by a majority of the respondents.
Do you judge a product only by how well it suffers neglect?
Initial quality? Materials? Image?
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Old 10-26-2014, 08:35 AM   #10
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Well, if you go over to the airforums site, you'll get an earful of how the airstream is the highest quality trailer ever built. That something like 80% of them ever built are still on the road and that a 30 to 40 year old ones are all over the place. Then they'll post about all their extensive renovations that replace all the systems, replace the wood floors and fix all the leaks.

I considered an airstream because I like the aesthetic, but I don't care for the fragility of the cosmetics. They need quite a bit of care to keep looking that great, and god forbid if you clunk anything. Dents are very pricey.

In my opinion, nothing compares to the quality of the Oliver. But all of the molded trailers seem to hold up very well. There are LOTS of old ones still out there you can buy. That says something right there.

I think all the trailer manufacturers, regardless of the build type, have to make compromises to get a low weight. That invariably leads to quality problems. So if you are chasing low weight, then I think you need to lower your expectations a bit.
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Old 10-26-2014, 08:38 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by Night Sailor View Post
Tell him to spray the roof with U-Pol bed liner. It can be color tinted and works great.
Too late, roof was fixed then the trailer was immediately sold.
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Old 10-26-2014, 08:49 AM   #12
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Seems to me to be an easy choice if buying new, or at least very late model... You buy a Bigfoot. I understand that Airstream is now referred to as the "BigFoot of Aluminum Trailers"..... LOL PLEEEZE

In used trailers it's more about condition, condition and condition, than who was the original builder. I updated my now 41 year old Hunter Compact and it was still in much better condition when I started than a few of the above mentioned brands I have worked on that were 10 years old and not well taken care of.
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Old 10-26-2014, 12:07 PM   #13
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To be honest, I don't think it is easy to answer your question without knowing your specific needs. For example, the Oliver is considered by many as the "best" fiberglass trailer, however if you don't do 4 season camping, want "warm" wood finishes, and want light weight, that & the extra cost may not be worth it.

Do you want an American built trailer? Do you want to purchase new? Do you want a trailer from a manufacturer that is still in business? What is your price range? What do you plan to tow it with? How many do you plan to sleep in the trailer? Do you like to tinker (maybe even completely rebuild an old fiberglass shell) or do you want a ready to go trailer? Do you want a manufacturer that is willing to make modifications during the build of your trailer? Lots of questions to answer before you make a decision.

My suggestion would be to look for fiberglass trailer rallies in your area (there are many in Oregon) & visit during the "open house" times to see first hand what is available & how they are built. Talk to the owners about what they like & dislike about their trailers (knowing that most owners feel theirs is the best).

I'm not sure you will find a lot of support for aluminum trailers on this forum (it is the Fiberglass RV forum). All trailers without proper maintenance will eventually leak; aluminum at rivets, fiberglass around windows & vents. The big advantage of fiberglass eggs is the minimum of seams where most leaks start. Another big advantage of the fiberglass trailer is it generally has no framing, so there is little hidden wood (other than the previously mentioned floors) to rot. Most fiberglass trailers are lighter than the same sized aluminum trailers, so if weight is a consideration, don't feel aluminum is the way to go.

I spent the better part of one year making visits to both owners & rallies prior to my purchase and feel the effort was well worth it.
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Old 10-26-2014, 03:00 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by johnwgorman1 View Post
I know this is a totally loaded question. I realize that quality comes in many forms. I guess what I am asking here is... from your point of view which brand of "egg" camper is made from the best materials for: structural rigidity, and rot resistance. I have seen some "all aluminum" campers out there (not fiberglass) and I am impressed that they simply cannot rot and yet are super light-weight. I really don't want to be working on dry rot. If there is a leak that is one thing. If it leads to soaking of wood and mold and, and, and... that's another.
You've gotten some great answers to your 'loaded question'. I will guess that you might have seen the 'all aluminum' Livin'Lite Camplite. Yes, I am also impressed by the concept of nothing to rot (beyond seat cushions and such). The Camplite trailers can (will?) eventually leak at seams, but big deal, no real harm done. That's pretty attractive.

Some advantages of molded fiberglass over the Camplite:
Less potential leak points
More aerodynamic, thus easier on the drive train and better mpg
Easier to climate-control (Camplite floors can get ice cold in winter)
Aluminum welds will fatigue and give out before molded FG will, although both will last a long time
Aesthetics

Lil Snoozy shells are very rigid and self supporting, with FG underside.
Casita shells have FG underbelly, so the floor is not structural. Same with Oliver.
Escape shells also include FG underbelly and include channels and drain points in case any water does make it inside.
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