How strong is the roof on my Trillium? - Fiberglass RV



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Old 05-24-2019, 10:46 AM   #1
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Name: Ariane
Trailer: 1977 Trillium
British Columbia
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How strong is the roof on my Trillium?

Hi there! I'm a new member of this forum but I have been visiting this site for information since 2016 when I did a trans Canada trip to get my 1977 Trillium. It's in pretty good shape, all things considered. I am very happy with doing little improvements every year. I usually pressure wash it every spring and this year I have sap and black spots that are stubborn and wont come out, on the roof.
Can I stand on top of the roof without damaging it to scrub the spots off? I'm about 200lbs. I got Bar Keepers Friend today and am going to attempt to get the more stubborn spots. I'm still on the fence about what to use as a finishing protecting coat. Lots to read here on that.
Grateful for advice on getting up on that roof.

Here's a couple of pics from last year.
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Pistachio.jpg   Pistachio 2.jpg  

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Old 05-24-2019, 11:01 AM   #2
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Name: Dave & Paula Brown
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The roof is NOT strong enough to stand on. Work from ladders or scaffolding.
Have you used Turtle Wax “Bug & Tar Remover”?
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Old 05-24-2019, 11:20 AM   #3
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Name: Ariane
Trailer: 1977 Trillium
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I have not tried the turtle bug and tar remover, do you recommend it over the Bar Keepers Friend? Thanks for answering my question re: roof strength. I'm a short gal and there is only so far I can reach with my arms and a ladder....I never even thought of scaffolding. Good tip.
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Old 05-24-2019, 11:43 AM   #4
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Barkeepers Friend is a mild abrasive, and will not dissolve tree sap, while the Turtle Wax Bug & Tar remover is a chemical that will dissolve the sap.
You can use a washing pad on an extendable pole, while standing on the ladder to apply it and buff it off.
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Old 05-25-2019, 10:20 AM   #5
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Name: Claire
Trailer: 1978 Trillium 4500
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We set up a ladder on each side of the trailer and ran a 2" X 12" X12' plank between the two ladders. It bowed a bit, but it kept the weight off the trailer.



Usually I can reach the middle with my window cleaning chamois. It is a sheepskin sleeve that velcros to a metal "T" shaped piece that screws on the end of a pole.
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Old 05-25-2019, 11:22 AM   #6
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Name: Kathleen (Kai: ai as in wait)
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We painted Peanut in 2016, and have not yet waxed it. Paul washes it after every trip, sometimes before a trip (for clean, aerodynamic towing, hah!). I like the idea of Turtle Wax bug and tar remover, but oddly, Peanut just doesn't get that dirty where we have it parked. Just lucky, I guess.


Paul says he would never go on top of Peanut entirely (he does lean over from a ladder to reach--some) and he weighs about 183.


He brushed the snow load off last winter when it got over a couple inches...just to be safe.


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Old 05-26-2019, 07:05 AM   #7
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Name: Duane
Trailer: 1976 Trillium 1300
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How strong is the roof on my trillium

Hi I used a 6" step ladder with a rag on the top protecting the walls to clean and apply Cleaner & ZEP to the roof my trillium with a sponge applicator. Work down the walls in the same way using the ladder if needed. Three coats were enough to do the job. You will have to wipe any drips or runs as you go. Thin coats are best applied in the shade so drying is slower especially on the roof areas. Mine shines like new now . Good luck ! Duane p.s. you will have sticky fingers so wear gloves to apply the ZEP .
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Old 05-26-2019, 07:36 AM   #8
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On this forum I read that butter will dissolve pine tree sap. That so appeared to be an "old wives tale" that I just had to try it so I could call out the poster on his false claim.

But it worked!

Apply, let it sit for an hour or two, wash off. Repeat if needed.

And no standing on the roof!
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Old 05-26-2019, 11:02 AM   #9
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Name: Kathleen (Kai: ai as in wait)
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butter, margarine, baby oil, mineral oil, Crisco...lard. ALL will remove glue and sap residue. It's no folk tale, as you discovered. Good sleuthing.

As you pointed out, apply well, let it sit a while, scrape/remove and repeat as needed. You can have some buttered toast while you're waiting. Cinnamon with sugar is a nice addition.


On the other hand--buttering the entire roof and walls of a sap-laden trailer might call for a huge tin of Crisco or another product: I can't quite see slathering real butter all over Peanut...not that Peanut is sappy, but in case it was...

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Old 05-29-2019, 06:32 AM   #10
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Trailer: 1975 Trillium 13ft and 1977 Airstream Tradewind 25 ft
Saskatchewan
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Agree - no standing on roof! Too much weight concentrated in a small area will likely cause cracking.

I found with our roof, once the bulk of the sap, dirt and lichens were removed, there were still black stains in the gel coat. I used a 10% bleach mix, let it sit for 20 minutes then rinsed. Cleaned it really well. Made sure to finish with a good quality sealer - Poliglow.
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