how do I install things to the fiberglass - Fiberglass RV



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Old 01-12-2019, 11:45 AM   #1
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Name: Mark
Trailer: Trails West Campster
California
Posts: 19
how do I install things to the fiberglass

Hello I have a Trails West Campster (year unknown) I wish to add curtains to the inside windows. Also I am planning on covering all wood surfaces with a plastic white product that used to be used for bathroom walls in cheaper homes.
https://www.lowes.com/pd/Parkland-Pl...riorWallPanels. I know how to glue the panels but adding things to the fiberglass I have no clue. How would I add a mount for an awning to the outside? Thanks in advance AstroMark:
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Old 01-13-2019, 11:02 AM   #2
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Name: joe
Trailer: burro 1982
Tennessee
Posts: 83
Attaching items to fiberglass

Hi Mark, I have made my own awning for my 13 foot fiberglass Burro. I went through a company called sailrite.com. they have so many items, fabrics and everything that you need. I ordered what is called a kedar rail strip and the insert for it. I made my awning 7 ft wide. I glued the Kedar rail to the fiberglass using J-B weld for plastic fiberglass etc. It stuck really well and has been there now for 3 years. (I have been across the u.s. three trips and back to Tennessee and it's still there.). I sewed my awning from fabric that I ordered from sailright. They have lots of beautiful fabrics for outdoors, and lots of it is used for upholstery in boats etc. I sewed mine on to the kedar strip myself with a standard sewing machine. I used tent poles and stakes to tie the two poles off on the front with grommets that I inserted to the corners of the awning. I felt much better doing this because I did not have to drill holes and use rivets in to my fiberglass. As for items on the inside I have had good luck using the same epoxy adhesive by JB weld or using VHB double-sided tape is really handy for many applications. The awning is really easy to install once you arrive at your camping destination. It just slides into the kedar rail, then put up your tent poles and you're set. It slides right out and fold it and put it inside the camper while traveling. I had looked at several other options before deciding on this method. Most were too expensive for my budget and also require drilling holes into the fiberglass to install. Hope you find a solution.
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Old 01-13-2019, 03:34 PM   #3
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Name: Peter
Trailer: G30 Elite Class C
British Columbia
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What about using Velcro, when worn out one can just replace it. Silicone sticks things to just about anything but is not permanent, or they have items that use Command Glues which some say are real good?
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Old 01-13-2019, 03:39 PM   #4
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Name: Alan
Trailer: 2000 17' Casita Freedom Deluxe...Tow vehicle 2015 Toyota Tacoma Dble Cab V6 Prerunner
California
Posts: 1,095
Command hooks worked for me
Used them for curtain rods
Even a small shelf
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Old 01-13-2019, 04:53 PM   #5
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Trailer: 2009 17 ft Casita Freedom Deluxe
Posts: 623
I love Command Strips, but there are limits. The wind caught my door curtain, and pulled the Comand hook off. I will replace it.

Our other curtains have household type rods and holders. There is a small metal plate screwed to the window frame, not the fiberglass. The curtain rod holders are screwed to that plate.

There are several places where the previous owner that refurbished it used stainless steel bolts through the wall to secure things.
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Old 01-13-2019, 05:31 PM   #6
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Name: K C
Trailer: 1971 Trailswest Campster
Washington
Posts: 2,224
For installing things on the interior you can first remove areas of the carpet and clean the surface of glue residue. Then install blocking against the fiberglass surface using thickened epoxy. The interior surface of the fiberglass on a Trailswest Campster is rough which means that VHB tape is not going to work for attaching anything onto the interior surface. Just because a person with a different trailer says it worked on theirs does not mean it will work on your trailer. VHB tape will also not properly adhere to raw wood that has not been coated with a sealer.


For installing heavy items such as one of the awnings that has a metal housing you can install blocking on the interior for the mounting screws or bolts to grip into. Or for thru bolts you can drill thru and on the interior use thick fender washers or custom made metal backing plates. The fiberglass shell on its own is not substantial enough to bear the weight of a heavy awning that only has a very few attach points so for that type of installation you need to distribute the load across a wider surface area on the interior surface by one means or another.


If you have an unpainted exterior you can install some types of the long awning rails with VHB tape. There are many versions of VHB tape. The 3M company has a website with recommendations of the various types of VHB for use in various situations on various kinds of surfaces. That site also discusses the required surface preparation and what primers might be needed to insure a proper bond.


There is more than one type of awning rail around. Some hook into clips. Some are long with a flat back and screw holes every so many inches. Some are flat with no screw holes. Some have raised edges, some are curved, others are L shaped. There are also vinyl awning rails. Some awning rails are ridged, some can be conformed to curves. This is because there are many types of RVs and other vehicles including boats that use awnings. The good thing is you have choices, the bad thing is you have to do research and make a decision.


Just remember that a Trails West Campster is not all that tall. In the long run it might be a lot easier and less expensive to use a popup shelter for your shade structure.
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Old 01-13-2019, 06:41 PM   #7
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Name: Mark
Trailer: Trails West Campster
California
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Thank you all for the replies

I am so glad i joined this forum you guys are great! Thanks much! AstroMark
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Old 01-13-2019, 07:37 PM   #8
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Name: Jann
Trailer: Casita
Colorado
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AstroMark View Post
Hello I have a Trails West Campster (year unknown) I wish to add curtains to the inside windows. Also I am planning on covering all wood surfaces with a plastic white product that used to be used for bathroom walls in cheaper homes.
https://www.lowes.com/pd/Parkland-Pl...riorWallPanels. I know how to glue the panels but adding things to the fiberglass I have no clue. How would I add a mount for an awning to the outside? Thanks in advance AstroMark:
If there are cabinets above the windows you can do what I did. I put command hooks that have metal swing down hooks on the bottom of the cabinets close to the wall and hung small round curtain rods on the hooks. I took white twist ties and attached the rod to the hooks for extra protection. I put heavy curtains on the rods and in about 9-10 years they are still there. If we ever get rid of the trailer the new owner could easily remove the rods and hooks if they so desire. I can easily take off the twist ties and remove the rods so I can take down the curtains for washing them.
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Old 01-14-2019, 02:39 PM   #9
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Name: nancy
Trailer: 16' Scamp, layout 4
Tennessee
Posts: 27
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I have posted this before re: awning. A couple of Scampers we met last October used several "wreath holder" suction cups that they got at Hobby Lobby. The suction cups, with hooks, were spaced along their Scamp, to match the grommet holes in their tarp, and then they had a couple of poles out front. Quick, cheap way to put up an "awning", without marring the Scamp finish.
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Old 02-07-2019, 08:56 PM   #10
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Name: Mark
Trailer: Trails West Campster
California
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anyone know what the bolt pattern is for the wheels ?

I know they are 14 inch and 5 lug but I need to know what to ask for to buy 3 new wheels and tires. I am going to weld up my own spare holder. Also My camper does bot have anything on the inside walls it is just fiberglass no paint or anything is this the way its suppose to be? What type of paint can I use inside or out? Thanks , Mark
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Old 02-08-2019, 04:39 AM   #11
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Name: Gerry
Trailer: 1979 Boler 1300 / 1991 Casita Freedom Deluxe
Maine
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Mark, Method we used for curtains are as follow: From RV dealer we got this "U" channel along with a lot of the "T" slides that go into the channel.
I cut these to length and drilled 1/8" holes through the channel into the frame of the window, top and bottom so we could secure them tight to the pane of glass.
To the slides I attached a Male end of a regular snap.
Wife made this wonderful curtains with wildlife motif on them and I attached Female side of snap onto these and it was done.
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Old 02-08-2019, 06:06 AM   #12
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Name: K C
Trailer: 1971 Trailswest Campster
Washington
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jann Todd View Post
If there are cabinets above the windows you can do what I did. I put command hooks that have metal swing down hooks on the bottom of the cabinets close to the wall and hung small round curtain rods on the hooks. I took white twist ties and attached the rod to the hooks for extra protection. I put heavy curtains on the rods and in about 9-10 years they are still there. If we ever get rid of the trailer the new owner could easily remove the rods and hooks if they so desire. I can easily take off the twist ties and remove the rods so I can take down the curtains for washing them.
There is no room for upper cabinets in a Campster, it is low ceiling with a popup canvas area over the kitchen.
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Old 02-08-2019, 06:23 AM   #13
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Name: K C
Trailer: 1971 Trailswest Campster
Washington
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AstroMark View Post
I know they are 14 inch and 5 lug but I need to know what to ask for to buy 3 new wheels and tires. I am going to weld up my own spare holder. Also My camper does bot have anything on the inside walls it is just fiberglass no paint or anything is this the way its suppose to be? What type of paint can I use inside or out? Thanks , Mark
The original interior wall finish in the Campsters was a non-woven type of indoor outdoor carpet, there is no pile to it, no texture pattern and also no backing material either. You can still find it in some carpet stores. The nature of it being non woven made it easier to conform to curves in the surfaces. Not having any printed or texture pattern meant no issues with matching a pattern or surface texture direction. It was a mottled light brown color. It was an inexpensive material to apply, reasonably lightweight and it did the job of reducing condensation. It worked well for the era of the build and it still works just fine if you can find some of it. It is applied with yellow contact cement and that works just fine for the task. While that material itself is mold resistant its slightly fuzzy surface did capture and hang onto dust and dirt and therefore it did develop musty smelling mold issues with the mold spores feeding on the dirt if not maintained with regular cleaning and vacuuming to remove the dirt from the surface.

As to what paint to use, there are lots of threads on this forum for how to paint fiberglass gel coat. It does not matter what brand of trailer it is, they are all basically the same type of gel coat exterior.

As to painting the interior, same paints work but that is not a good finish to do for the inteior. The interior surface is not smooth or attractive looking, it was never meant to be an exposed surface. It is rough with a lot of glass fibers coming out of the sprayed into the mold material. Plus you will have condensation issues if the only thing you do to the interior is apply paint on it.

Go to the youtube channel for "sailrite" and look at videos for applying materials to the interior surface of fiberglass boats. Those videos will teach you how to do the job and what materials work for it.
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