Need To Seal on Bigfoot? - Fiberglass RV


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Old 03-05-2006, 04:59 PM   #1
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At the point where the top and bottom halves of my Bigfoot meet, there is a trim piece that appears to have two separate pieces that runs all the way around the perimeter. I think the center trim strip just covers up any screws used to attach the wider strip. I'm not sure if the previous owner gooped on a crappy looking silicone bead at the point where the fiberglass and the trim piece meet or if it came from the factory like that (it's a 1994). Is this silicone really necessary? Doesn't the top half of the trailer have a lip that goes over the bottom half so water does not enter the mating area? Isn't the trim piece just decoration? I don't know. I haven't removed the trim piece because I don't know how.
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Old 03-05-2006, 07:11 PM   #2
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On Scamps, the seam where the two halves join is fiberglassed and the single trim piece is intended to be purely cosmetic. I'd guess that Bigfoot does the same and the trim pieces don't need to be sealed.

Were I you, I'd call Bigfoot and ask.
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Old 03-05-2006, 07:18 PM   #3
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Thanks, Pete. I'll do that tomorrow morning.
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Old 03-05-2006, 07:33 PM   #4
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The seam in Bolers seem to be different from some, perhaps most, other designs, because the shells end in flanges, which meet in the horizontal plane. While the details are different, the same thing seems to happen: the intended seal (the layer of fiberglass on the inside which Pete describes) fails, and some owner adds some sort of goop between the fiberglass shell and something which I agree looks like it was intended as only a cosmetic trim piece. Here's what I think my Boler B1700 has:

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I know that the Boler design is different from most because it the trim is much narrower(vertically) and sticks out much more (horizontally) than others; presumably the other designs are vertical where the shells meet and are flanged as Ron suggests. Can anyone provide the Bigfoot equivalent to my Boler drawing - or Scamp, or anything - both for Ron and for the rest of us?
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Old 03-06-2006, 05:13 PM   #5
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I just got off the phone with Gary from the Bigfoot factory. He said that the factory does run a bead of sealer around on the top of the center trim piece (where it meets the body). Apparently, the previous owner wanted to add more to what was already there and glopped it on in not-to-neat a fashon. I'll just take off what's there and run another bead.
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Old 03-06-2006, 11:09 PM   #6
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Firstly, the radiuses on the shell halves where they meet are much tighter than the drawings suggest.......probably about 3/16" as the lips are almost 90 degrees to the shell ......the halves are not riveted together as suggested....seems all the rivets do is hold the band on and are only riveted through the top of the band into the fiberglass and some don`t penetrate the lower glass shell half........my 17' Boler leaked because seems that someone at the factory thought that in their wisdom it would be best to run long drywall type screws between the two halves to hold the some interior components on better which in turn compromised the seal that was intended by the fiberglassing that holds the two halves together on the inside.....in time water started seeping into the trailer and created some water damage seemingly over a long span of time.....Benny
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Old 03-07-2006, 09:18 AM   #7
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Apparently, the previous owner wanted to add more to what was already there and glopped it on in not-to-neat a fashon. I'll just take off what's there and run another bead.
I too need to fix the belly band on my Scamp. It appears when the previous owner decided to sell the trailer, he thought he'd freshen up the look by applying a new bead of white silicone..unfortunately he didn't remove what was already there first!

I'm wondering if the stuff Per mentions in this post is what I should use?

FlexiSeal
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Old 03-07-2006, 10:27 AM   #8
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Donna, Does the belly band on the Scamp look the same as on the Bolers and is it held on with POP rivets? Judging from Pete`s post it seems as if the construction is same as the Boler and if so why have a sealer in there at all, unless the previous owner assumed there was a leak there.....Benny
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Old 03-07-2006, 10:46 AM   #9
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The belly area is fully fiberglassed. I think it's an asthetics issue. The aluminum belly band doesn't fit snug against the body in several places. A gap here, a gab there. The bead of "whatever" caulking just gives it a finished look. My point, is, we know silicone doesn't last (in fact it's peeling up in several places on the belly band now)...I was wondering if the FlexiSeal would be better or at least last a lot longer.
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Old 03-07-2006, 01:39 PM   #10
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During my conversation with the Bigfoot factory, Gary mentioned that they use a piece of (countertop) formica or anything that won't scratch the gelcoat to remove the silicone. They then use isopropyl alcohol as a final wipe. I'm not sure what to replace the silicone with other than the 3M clear stuff in the tube.
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Old 03-07-2006, 02:19 PM   #11
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During my conversation with the Bigfoot factory, Gary mentioned that they use a piece of (countertop) formica or anything that won't scratch the gelcoat to remove the silicone. They then use isopropyl alcohol as a final wipe.
Thanks for the tip! I have some silicone removal ahead of me, and wasn't sure of the best way to go about it.

Jeanne
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Old 03-07-2006, 02:46 PM   #12
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I use a plexiglass windshield ice scrapper to remove silicone, etc. It also doesn't scratch the gel coat.

Ron, clear silicone doesn't stay clear for very long. My experience (in my home shower) is that it actually looks worse than white when it gets dirty. Just my 2 cents.
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Old 03-07-2006, 06:33 PM   #13
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Or...I could just go out and buy a new Escape and not worry about it for a few years!!
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Old 03-07-2006, 08:28 PM   #14
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