What's Old is New Again or Vice-a-Versa - Fiberglass RV


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Old 04-09-2007, 05:34 AM   #1
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Name: Gerry
Trailer: Boler 13 ft / 31 ft Holiday Rambler
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Just wondering how many out there are like me and my wife and try to keep their little campers looking original.

I have made several improvements such as shelves and some 120V wiring, 12V exhaust fan, All new wiring with a battery added on tongue but other then the air conditioner, (added by previous owner) on roof our 1980 Boler 13ft.er looks original, Dull gel-coat and all.

Again how do you deal about KEEPING IT ORIGINAL?

Gerry the canoebuilder
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Old 04-09-2007, 06:52 AM   #2
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I see absolutely no benefit in keeping a fiberglass trailer original. Ask yourself the simple question, if you see a trailer for sale and it says "original," or "modifications"...and the list is long....which trailer do you think may have more value? I always think of Moguland when this topic comes up. A Bolar in original condition would go for far less than this trailer sold for...which I think was $7,000-8,000 on e-Bay. The rub is the modifications must be done using good techniques and quality parts.

Even now, creature comforts are few and far between when it comes from the trailer manufacturer. The only way to get a trailer unique, is to make changes. Embrace change! It ain't a Model T!

My 2 1/2 cents.
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Old 04-09-2007, 07:38 AM   #3
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Interesting question

There is more to this at least for me than any one simple answer.
I try to ask myself before diving in,how will this compliment the basic design I am going for.
Instead of doing mods each on its own I try to conceive a "Bigger Picture" where everything can look planned.
I have seen mods that just do not seem to "Fit" the trailer again at least to me.
It is a lot easier to acheive this integration the more simple I keep the mod.
Sometimes it is tempting to go crazy ripping stuff out but I always seem to make myself work that I did not forsee by doing it without a "Master Plan".

One reason I have liked the Trillium's is that the interior is non-movable for the most part and this helps steer me to mods to compliment that original design.

On the new Fiberstream I have been tempted to gut a lot of the interior just because I can but I am trying to hold back so I can develop some ideas before starting.

Keep it Simple is what I try even if it is Complicated to do.

Ed
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Old 04-09-2007, 07:45 AM   #4
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Like Donna, I think that a trailer that has late-model mods that are well done increases the value of the trailer. It shows the trailer has been well cared for, and modifications like A/C, fantastic fans, newer fridges, fixtures, etc. keep it modern and updated.

I've had Airstreams back to a 1953 Flying Cloud. The exterior looks period, but why in the world (except for museum display) would you want to keep a kerosene "Byam Burner" as your heat source when modern cats and forced air are significantly more efficient and safer? The 1953 faucet was interesting, but certainly not as elegant as what's available now, and a linoleum countertop left a GREAT deal to be desired.

I think there's always room for updating.

Roger
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Old 04-09-2007, 08:15 AM   #5
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This is an interesting thread. I felt the need to keep our 16' UHaul in original condition, as only 200 were made. But in light of the comments (and also, we are missing the original back dinette table that was made into a permanent bed), I don't feel bad as we make it comfortable for us. It won't be really different, but if we need to change something to make it work for us, I won't feel so guilty.

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Old 04-09-2007, 09:58 AM   #6
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Here's a company that specializes in taking an original Boler and turning them into works of art:
Bolerworks
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Old 04-09-2007, 10:17 AM   #7
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Different strokes for different folks...

There don't seem to be a lot of folks in the fiberglass trailer crowd that are all that into the whole "restoration" and "exactly as new" thing. I know I'm not. I used to spend a lot of time around camera collectors though and most of them are the opposite. I tended to chop them up and build new stuff out of them too. (That includes taking a hacksaw to them and making SERIOUS modifications! )

Mike
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Old 04-09-2007, 10:32 AM   #8
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I think I'd feel more strongly about the exterior- for example, painting over the original logo would bother me. In part that's because most people don't know what the interior looked like originally.
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Old 04-09-2007, 01:17 PM   #9
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When it comes to changes, original isn't as important on FG trailers as in spirit with the original trailer design. I haven't seen any on Antique Roadshow yet.
I have a 1950 Cessna 140 airplane that is largely original, only radio and navigation equipment have been updated to todays standards. Keeping old electronics would reduce the utility and value of it. But, the updated equipment is what would be installed if the aircraft was manufactured today. It isn't overkill for the original mission of the plane.
The only other changes were manditory or desirable for safety on an aircraft that is 57 years old.
For changes on a 28 year old trailer, I try to restore the worn out or neglected areas and update the areas that are outmoded in todays standards. The original mission, IMHO, was to be a compact, lightweight, efficient, yet comfortable camping trailer. All the goodies out there available are not all desirable to this original mission. The goodies I'm interested in, are the options that enhance the original mission by making the trailer more efficient and comfortable for my wife and I. Lightweight and simplicity are what attracted me to these trailers and any changes I make have to pass those basic benchmarks. That is what should be kept original.
Love the fiberglass, Dave
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Old 04-09-2007, 04:28 PM   #10
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Hay Donna...!
Y u got anuthing against Model T's???


This is our 'other'car with a non glass trailer in the background.
NO, the trailer isn't a stick trailer either, LOL but a 1965 Emperor tent trailer...
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Old 04-09-2007, 06:24 PM   #11
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Boy, I took this “looking original” as meaning, “How do you keep the Fiberglass from LOOKING BAD, oxidizing and looking crummy.”

Yes, Fiberglass oxidizes. It must be kept protected from the air. That is usually done by keeping a Good coat of WAX on the Fiberglass after removing the oxidation by polishing.

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Old 04-09-2007, 07:09 PM   #12
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It's your trailer and you make it the way you want it. Don't worry about keeping the "original".

Because a trailer is made for everyone - that doesn't mean that it fits your particular needs 5-10-20-30 years later. If you are able to make changes that look "professional", why not?

Most times, modifications are made to make "living" in a trailer more comfortable - and I'm all for that.
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Old 04-09-2007, 08:04 PM   #13
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Quote:
I see absolutely no benefit in keeping a fiberglass trailer original.

I always think of Moguland when this topic comes up. A Bolar in original condition would go for far less than this trailer sold for...

The rub is the modifications must be done using good techniques and quality parts.

The only way to get a trailer [b]unique, is to make changes. Embrace change! It ain't a Model T!
What about Bardy A's GEOGRAPHIC? He couldn't go completely original with it, but he kept the spirit of the original design. Other than painting the exterior, the only modification he made was a stainless steel countertop. Otherwise, his changes were in updating unseen things, like the plumbing and the wiring.
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Old 04-09-2007, 08:30 PM   #14
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Quote:
Just wondering how many out there are like me and my wife and try to keep their little campers looking original.

[b]Again how do you deal about KEEPING IT ORIGINAL?
My Fiber Stream came to me nearly original, and I have not changed much, other than to deal with the deterioration. [b]I have tried to show some discipline and restraint in the modifications I have made. I have repeatedly waxed the gelcoat, rather than repaint, because I like the "Patina" of the yellowed finish. I replaced striping that significant ghosting told me this trailer had at one time. The upholstery and carpeting are still in good condition, after cleaning, and the green color is something I like. (I may have been of a different opinion about Orange ). I removed a bunch of tacky cheap plastic stuff that the previous owner nailed up. I put the microwave in a cabinet, behind a door, so it doesn't show. The window Air Conditioner is not permenently installed, and I don't need it more than a couple of times a season.
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