Bigfoot age? - Fiberglass RV


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Old 12-17-2010, 08:47 AM   #1
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Name: Kevin (Ken)
Trailer: Bigfoot 17, 1988
Wisconsin
Posts: 159
Bigfoot age?

Hello. I am looking to get a 17' egg. The Bigfoot looks the best to me, due to the layout and front window. I am planning to go out and look at a 1981 Bigfoot 17 soon ($5k).

My preferred price range is around $10K or so max, so I was hoping for one that was more like early 90's. However, none are available now. The new ones look great, but it seems doubtful to me that I would be getting that much more for $25k than I could get for much less with an old one. However, I have not rv'ed since I was a kid, so maybe there are issues I am not thinking of?

In addition to thoughts about age and price/value in general, does anyone have any info regarding Bigfoots particularly? I was thinking there might be issues with specific model years or periods.. that sort of thing.

Background and context: I am a sculptor and have a lot of experience fixing up and selling houses, so I can do a lot of work myself, including customizations. I am planning on using it nearly full time trekking for around half a year, then using it intermittently for road trips and house fixing expeditions after that. That will probably start in about 2 months, so I don't have a long time to wait for my ideal trailer to churn up in the classifieds.
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Old 12-17-2010, 02:48 PM   #2
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Trailer: 1979 13 ft Boler, 1987 & 1988 Bigfoot 5th Wheel
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There is one thing that I can think of that can be a problem with a few Bigfoots. There have been a few that the ceiling/roof have delaminated. You would easily be able to tell by looking at the ceiling and roof. There should be a slight crowning.

The other problem with any brand older unit is...well everything is older; the appliances, the decor, the cushions. I can tell you that we have friends that have vintage trailers 40-50 years old and the original appliances work just fine. On the other hand some have needed to be replaced.

It sounds as though you are very handy and could handle most work that might have to be done. For around 10K you should be able to get a very serviceable trailer, or for 5K you might be able to also. Just depends on what you can find when you are looking. Being up in Seattle should give you more to choose from being closer to the origination point of Bigfoots.
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Old 12-17-2010, 03:08 PM   #3
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Trailer: Bigfoot 19 ft (B19)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pindraak View Post
Hello. I am looking to get a 17' egg. The Bigfoot looks the best to me, due to the layout and front window. I am planning to go out and look at a 1981 Bigfoot 17 soon ($5k).

My preferred price range is around $10K or so max, so I was hoping for one that was more like early 90's. However, none are available now. The new ones look great, but it seems doubtful to me that I would be getting that much more for $25k than I could get for much less with an old one. However, I have not rv'ed since I was a kid, so maybe there are issues I am not thinking of?

In addition to thoughts about age and price/value in general, does anyone have any info regarding Bigfoots particularly? I was thinking there might be issues with specific model years or periods.. that sort of thing.

Background and context: I am a sculptor and have a lot of experience fixing up and selling houses, so I can do a lot of work myself, including customizations. I am planning on using it nearly full time trekking for around half a year, then using it intermittently for road trips and house fixing expeditions after that. That will probably start in about 2 months, so I don't have a long time to wait for my ideal trailer to churn up in the classifieds.
We have a 1989 B19 Bigfoot.I put in a new Dometic fridge a couple of years ago,this year I changed all the brakes (it is dual axle).Other wise everything is pretty well as new.We were lucky in that we found our trailer within a hundred miles of here,others we met have traveled a couple of thousand across Canada to get one.Good luck in your search.
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Old 12-17-2010, 04:31 PM   #4
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Name: Kevin (Ken)
Trailer: Bigfoot 17, 1988
Wisconsin
Posts: 159
The only currently available nearby candidate has had a roof leak problem, which is supposed to be a caulking issue:

Bigfoot Trailer 1981 17 foot gaucho model | Vancouver Island, BC, Canada | Fiberglass RV's For Sale

I'll require taking it to an rv place for inspection before I agree to buy, and will ask about delamination.

I noticed that there are a lot more available in Canada, which is why I'll probably have to get one in the next couple months, if it is to be a Bigfoot. After that, my home area will be the southwest. What I like about the Bigfoot vs all the others of the same size is the "gaucho" area, which I would probably leave as a bed, freeing up the table area in the front to serve as a seat/couch area all the time. With pretty much any of the others, I'll have to either hang out and sleep on the bed, or get into daily conversion, which seems like a waste of the front half of the trailer to me.
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Old 12-17-2010, 06:48 PM   #5
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Trailer: Bigfoot 19 ft (B19)
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Originally Posted by pindraak View Post
The only currently available nearby candidate has had a roof leak problem, which is supposed to be a caulking issue:

Bigfoot Trailer 1981 17 foot gaucho model | Vancouver Island, BC, Canada | Fiberglass RV's For Sale

I'll require taking it to an rv place for inspection before I agree to buy, and will ask about delamination.

I noticed that there are a lot more available in Canada, which is why I'll probably have to get one in the next couple months, if it is to be a Bigfoot. After that, my home area will be the southwest. What I like about the Bigfoot vs all the others of the same size is the "gaucho" area, which I would probably leave as a bed, freeing up the table area in the front to serve as a seat/couch area all the time. With pretty much any of the others, I'll have to either hang out and sleep on the bed, or get into daily conversion, which seems like a waste of the front half of the trailer to me.
They were made in B.C. Canada so more over that side of the country.I'm not sure where the roof will leak. We have an air conditioning unit on the roof and no leaks so far. We did have leaks where the awning is fitted, re bedding the fittings fixed that.We spend about three months a year in ours and are heading to Arizona in Feb. We make up each bed every night and don't find it a chore.
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Old 12-17-2010, 08:05 PM   #6
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Trailer: Bigfoot 17 ft (B17STD)
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I'd say that is far more than a caulking problem, I have the same trailer, a bit older, the in the roof the pictures is most likely delaminated. So check the roof buy pushing up on it. If it is just the back you might be okay with just fixing the leak, but the water tends to travel to the front, from above check and see see if there is any dishing in the the roof, The glue they used is a spray on contact cement, which is not water proof. I would also check the walls and look for anything that is loose. The only real way to repair is to remove the interior and replace. It is important that the delamination is repaired as it is the laminated sandwich construction that gives the trailer its strength, sort of like an airplane wing. I don't mean to scare you off the trailer, but it is a lot of work, if it needs repair.

I have posted some pictures of mine, so you can see the damage looked the same. When I removed the interior the ceiling basically fell off. I wasn't upset as I wanted it removed.
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Old 12-17-2010, 10:23 PM   #7
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Name: Kevin (Ken)
Trailer: Bigfoot 17, 1988
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Originally Posted by Daryl R View Post
I'd say that is far more than a caulking problem, I have the same trailer, a bit older, the in the roof the pictures is most likely delaminated. So check the roof buy pushing up on it. If it is just the back you might be okay with just fixing the leak, but the water tends to travel to the front, from above check and see see if there is any dishing in the the roof, The glue they used is a spray on contact cement, which is not water proof. I would also check the walls and look for anything that is loose. The only real way to repair is to remove the interior and replace. It is important that the delamination is repaired as it is the laminated sandwich construction that gives the trailer its strength, sort of like an airplane wing. I don't mean to scare you off the trailer, but it is a lot of work, if it needs repair.

I have posted some pictures of mine, so you can see the damage looked the same. When I removed the interior the ceiling basically fell off. I wasn't upset as I wanted it removed.

Thanks for the info. I expect I would/will be able to tell for myself if the roof lacked structure or strength, with or without expert opinion. To tell the truth, I think their "firm" price is a little high given the insufficient explanation of the problem and appearance of the ceiling photo. I was just hoping it would turn out to be nothing. Even going to see it involves large gas and ferry costs and customs hassles, so I will beware.

My problem is that I like the layout of the Bigfoot 17 too much. That lengthwise gaucho/bed in the back is way better for me.
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Old 12-18-2010, 12:37 AM   #8
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We love the layout, I just didn’t want you to miss the problems if there are any. I hope it works out well, they are great trailers.
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Old 12-18-2010, 05:53 AM   #9
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Name: Kevin (Ken)
Trailer: Bigfoot 17, 1988
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Since your picture looks the same, my guess is your diagnosis is probably right. Their price is too high for a trailer with a major problem.
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