Building a new frame from scratch....... - Fiberglass RV


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Old 09-01-2009, 06:44 PM   #1
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Trailer: 1973 13 ft Boler (Corneleus)
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We are currently in the process of building a new frame for our 13' boler. We will start welding in a few weeks. What I would like to knowis:

Are their any modifications and or additions we should consider to make the frame stronger/safer and /or more rugged?

Our frame is the style that has the drop down floor area.

What we also want to know is what people think about leaf springs versus torsion arms and the axles we should consider

Also is their anything we can do frame wise to help alleviate the door sag issues/problems?

The advice and suggestions given so far for the work we needed to do has been awesome

Cheers

Ursula
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Old 09-01-2009, 07:37 PM   #2
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Quote:
We are currently in the process of building a new frame for our 13' boler. We will start welding in a few weeks. What I would like to knowis:

Are their any modifications and or additions we should consider to make the frame stronger/safer and /or more rugged?

Our frame is the style that has the drop down floor area.

What we also want to know is what people think about leaf springs versus torsion arms and the axles we should consider

Also is their anything we can do frame wise to help alleviate the door sag issues/problems?

The advice and suggestions given so far for the work we needed to do has been awesome

Cheers

Ursula
hello,
if you have the original frame copying it shouldnt be that hard for anyone who fabricates and welds too...I'm not familar with what that drop frame looks like (maybe you could post pics) but if made new it probably doesnt need alot of different mods. I'd consider increasing the gauge of the pipe or tubing used maybe one size(so the thickness of the pipe wall) that wont add enough weight to fret over and you'll have peace of mind...maybe powder coat the frame once done or a good epoxy type paint..I'd stay with the suspension used and just make it new if doing a frame replace.......I see alot of posts concerning frames on some of these eggs.I may have to get some drawings or older frames and make a few.....Bruce
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Old 09-01-2009, 08:55 PM   #3
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Trailer: 1994 19 ft Scamp 19 ft 5th Wheel / 2001 4wd 6cyl Silverado
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Hi I have been a welder for 40 years, I do not like enclosed tubing,piping, or enclosed anything when it comes to trailer frames, as the water,snow, humidity gets into it, it dries very,very.very slowly thus has a tendency to rust quickly, because it is enclosed,and damn near impossible to paint or galvanize, , so the metal is left untreated inside.. my very humble opinion would be a totally exposed steel such as 3 inch or 4inch C channel, it dries a lot faster, because it is not boxed, or enclosed ,, Paul
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Old 09-01-2009, 09:42 PM   #4
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Hi I have been a welder for 40 years, I do not like enclosed tubing,piping, or enclosed anything when it comes to trailer frames, as the water,snow, humidity gets into it, it dries very,very.very slowly thus has a tendency to rust quickly, because it is enclosed,and damn near impossible to paint or galvanize, , so the metal is left untreated inside.. my very humble opinion would be a totally exposed steel such as 3 inch or 4inch C channel, it dries a lot faster, because it is not boxed, or enclosed ,, Paul
We have thought about that too. Since we live in Alberta and can have snow for 6+ months followed by enough rain some summers to keep everything soggy for a long time. We purchased 3" channel Iron for the frame base. We are using the original as a template. We will definitely be painting it from top to bottom to ensure maximum life expectancy.
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Old 09-01-2009, 09:49 PM   #5
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hello,
if you have the original frame copying it shouldnt be that hard for anyone who fabricates and welds too...I'm not familar with what that drop frame looks like (maybe you could post pics) but if made new it probably doesnt need alot of different mods. I'd consider increasing the gauge of the pipe or tubing used maybe one size(so the thickness of the pipe wall) that wont add enough weight to fret over and you'll have peace of mind...maybe powder coat the frame once done or a good epoxy type paint..I'd stay with the suspension used and just make it new if doing a frame replace.......I see alot of posts concerning frames on some of these eggs.I may have to get some drawings or older frames and make a few.....Bruce
we are using the original as a template. we did get a way thicker gauge of channel iron than was previously used but kept it at the 3". Definitely going to paint prior to rejoining it. Looks like we will go the POR 15 route, but are still looking at options when it comes to that.

we have read in some posts that there are a few weak spots in the frame that if beefed up helps with stabilizing the fiberglass. Darn if I can't find them now

we are going to document the building of our frame via our blog. Once complete I will post measurements etc so if anyone else is wanting to do the same they don't have to hunt to hard

We are hoping to have it complete before it snows here
Cheers

Ursula
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Old 09-01-2009, 11:13 PM   #6
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Trailer: 1972 boler American and 1979 Trillium 4500
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Considering you have already purchased the materials ...
The two points that are usually week are on the streetside where the frame bends in at the front at the beginning of the A frame, and on the curbside, right at the door. I feel this is because the frame is cut for the doorway step. I'd consider a way of beefing up the metal to make the frame more contiguous under the door.
Secondly if your floor pan does not have the front extension under the front bench for the porta potti, now might be a good time to consider it since it makes for a much nicer front dinette mod later on.

Check the dexter site where they tell you how to beef up a C channel frame to handle an axle mount.
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Old 09-02-2009, 11:40 AM   #7
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Personally I wish the tongue on our Boler was a bit longer. We have the battery and propane tank there and it's a bit tight. We would love to add the generator over the battery which make thing VERY tight up there. A few more inches would be nice.

Also ours has the rear "hoop" with the space for a water tank under the floor in the "hoop". We don't have a water tank but it looks flimsy to me.
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Old 09-02-2009, 01:39 PM   #8
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Trailer: 1973 13 ft Boler (Corneleus)
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Considering you have already purchased the materials ...
The two points that are usually week are on the streetside where the frame bends in at the front at the beginning of the A frame, and on the curbside, right at the door. I feel this is because the frame is cut for the doorway step. I'd consider a way of beefing up the metal to make the frame more contiguous under the door.
Secondly if your floor pan does not have the front extension under the front bench for the porta potti, now might be a good time to consider it since it makes for a much nicer front dinette mod later on.

Check the dexter site where they tell you how to beef up a C channel frame to handle an axle mount.
Do you happen to have a link to said site?? The only Dexter I know is the TV show...lol

We are definitely going to be beefing up around the door and actually welding the channel iron to form the base for the doorso that is more sturdy. It was one of the first design flaws that my brother in law saw.

As for the tongue area how can we beef up the bends??

thanks for the responses everyone, keep em coming because they Are awesome

Cheers

Ursula
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Old 09-02-2009, 04:29 PM   #9
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I believe this is the site they are talking about.

Bill K

http://www.dexteraxle.com/

Quote:
Do you happen to have a link to said site?? The only Dexter I know is the TV show...lol
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Old 09-02-2009, 07:49 PM   #10
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Greetings,
I see your location and thought you might like to know that the Dexter axles are built under license for Canada at Standen Spring and Steering in Calgary. They also carry the parts for the axles and the brake units. As manufacturers, they seem to be a little cheaper than the trailer supply houses. Hope this helps.
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Old 09-02-2009, 08:43 PM   #11
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One thing to consider, If you have any mods that you have dreamed about, now is the time...
like an extra crossmember for a rear hitch or a redisign of the tongue for battery, air conditioner propane tank etc. Or maybe a mod under the front bench to allow for a front dinette or different storage or larger floor area and so on. This is your opportunity , so don't pass it up!
You might recess the frame at the door so that the threshold is reenforced and made of steel instead of wood, with a flat vertical area at the outer edge to accomodate a better bottom door gasket. In fact, flat steel at crucial points of attachment wouldn't hurt.
Don't forget to make your chain attachment at Two points on opposite sides of the frame, so that the chains can be properly crossed to form a "basket" in case of the trailer hopping off the hitch.
One more thing, IMHO you ought to consider rewiring your trailer "DOT" lights to return isolated to the TV plug without using the frame for a ground.
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