Trillium front window cover- can I repaint the Fiberglass? - Fiberglass RV


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Old 08-27-2016, 09:29 PM   #1
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Name: Cassie
Trailer: 1979 Trillium
British Columbia
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Trillium front window cover- can I repaint the Fiberglass?

This is the front window cover on our 1979 Trillium. (I am having a rough time uploading the photo, I will try from my laptop)

It is in great shape, although sun faded. All three Fiberglass panels are 10/10

(You may notice my makeshift tie down as the clasp to secure it closed needs to be realigned but that's not a big concern for me)

I would love to paint the Fiberglass panels cream to match the body of our trailer and put on a new decal.

Has anyone done this? What product would you suggest to paint the three panels with? Looks like I just have to unscrew the bottom aluminum rail, remove and pain the panels and voila!?

Thanks so much in advance.
Cassie
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Old 08-27-2016, 09:35 PM   #2
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Front window!
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Old 08-27-2016, 10:29 PM   #3
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Name: Mike
Trailer: Boler13/trillium4500/buro13
Ontario
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Originally Posted by Cassie Trill View Post
This is the front window cover on our 1979 Trillium. (I am having a rough time uploading the photo, I will try from my laptop)

It is in great shape, although sun faded. All three Fiberglass panels are 10/10

(You may notice my makeshift tie down as the clasp to secure it closed needs to be realigned but that's not a big concern for me)

I would love to paint the Fiberglass panels cream to match the body of our trailer and put on a new decal.

Has anyone done this? What product would you suggest to paint the three panels with? Looks like I just have to unscrew the bottom aluminum rail, remove and pain the panels and voila!?

Thanks so much in advance.
Cassie
If only it was that easy , I have painted a few trillium rock guards and have found it difficult to remove the panels . The problem is the plastic wedge/shims they use which are brittle and hard to remove on some rock guards. The last rock guard I painted I just taped the aluminum extrusions and painted it assembled and it turned out as well as the ones I frustratingly disassembled. You will have to do a lot of hand sanding to ge the thin fg smooth and use a good quality spray bomb close in color and it should turn out great. You may get a different response from some of the other trillium experts here on the secret to easily remove the panels but so far it has alluded me.in any case it will be worth the effort to paint it.
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Old 08-28-2016, 05:00 AM   #4
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Name: Carl
Trailer: 1981 Trillium 5500
Quebec
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I did mine last spring:
Working on a Trillium 5500


Panels were not that hard to remove. The center one goes out first and is the toughest to get out as you have to warp it carefully to pry it out of the aluminium frame. Then the side ones are easier because now you have space to work and slide them off. Installation is in revers order, center panel goes in last.
Note that the rock guard design on the 5500 is slightly different than on the 4500 and 1300.
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Old 08-28-2016, 09:05 AM   #5
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Name: Randy J.
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Looks pretty much like our '76 did. Our rock guards had embedded dirt and when I tried to clean them the fiberglass started to fray (it had a bit already, just got worse). You don't want those tiny particles of glass in your trailer!

What I did: I was in a hurry and so replaced all three panels with fairly thin aluminum, putting a new decal on the center. The panels were prefinished white but look pretty good.

If I had it to do over again, I might try cleaning up the old fiberglass panels and giving them several coats of two-part polyester resin to control the fibres, followed by a suitable paint.

I found the panels fairly easy to get out - just undo the screws in the aluminum frame (don't lose 'em!). And I replaced the plastic spacers with the double-thick sticky one side weather stripping.
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Old 08-28-2016, 09:20 AM   #6
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Name: Claire
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My rock guard panels had been replaced with rubber over particle board - a horrible combination as it just held water and slowly rotted.

When I replaced the panels with plastic panels I hard a very hard time doing the "dance" to get them back in as there was no flex to them. In the end I had to cut the corner of the frame and when I riveted it back together I put little aluminum triangles on them to keep them together. (the guys at Metal Warehouse came up with the idea and even cut the triangles for me.) There are pictures here. Trilliuim Rockguard

Like Carl said, there is no way to undo the current dimple pressure system they used when they built them. We tried prying and drilling to no success so had to go for the cutting.

As you have the original panels it sounds like you should have no trouble getting them in and out as long as you are careful. You cannot buy that style of fiberglass panel anymore.
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Old 08-28-2016, 04:48 PM   #7
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Name: Cassie
Trailer: 1979 Trillium
British Columbia
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Thank you to everyone for their input, I read Carl V's post and he did a great job! It looks like my Trillium is the same colour as his, so I am going to try and search out the same paint.

I am constantly impressed with how helpful everyone is on this forum, I appreciate everyones time! thank you
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Old 08-28-2016, 04:48 PM   #8
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Name: Randy
Trailer: (3)Trillium 4500,(4)Trillium 1300
Ardmore, Alabama
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Here's my rebuilt gravel guard.. Mine was in bad shape the fiberglass panel's were cracked in several places and needed replacing.. so I bought a sheet of FRP panel from Lowe's the ones with the bumpy face, turned them backwards sanded it smooth... then applied the decals.. spray 3 coats of clear enamel over the panels then re-installed them.. The old ones were held in place with the white plastic shim's other people were talking about and the FRP being thicker than the original ones, I had to place small wooden shims along the edge to hold them in tight and then calked them in place.. When the caulk dried I removed the wood shims and caulked where they had been.. I think it turned out pretty good and should be a lot tougher than the original ones..
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Old 08-28-2016, 09:00 PM   #9
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Name: Cassie
Trailer: 1979 Trillium
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Wow! That's impressive. I love how you tied the decals in and kept with the colour scheme. I think I will try and clean up my original panels and if I mess them up its nice to know I can either try and flip them over and try the backside or search out some FRP from Lowes.

Can I ask where you got your decals?
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Old 08-29-2016, 08:25 AM   #10
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Can I ask where you got your decals?

E-bay.. Looked for several days before I made my mine up on what I wanted they have so many different kinds and colors to choose from.. Had to e-mail the seller on both to find out the size sometimes they don't tell how large they are....
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Old 08-29-2016, 08:56 AM   #11
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Most print shops can make up what you want from the internet. Find what you want on line and then note where it is and take it in. They can resize and colour match to what you want. The Trillium logo is not trademark protected so it is not an issue.
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Old 08-30-2016, 07:48 PM   #12
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I flipped the three panels around maybe five years ago. Can't remember the disassembly sequence but yes it involved unscrewing the center uprights, removing shims, and some panel bending.
The discoloured fibers were dealt with by washing with bleach - even better results after letting sit overnight. Looks as new as new.
Got my decal a few weeks ago from Trillium RV parts site.
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Old 09-05-2016, 08:33 AM   #13
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Name: Roy
Trailer: 1972 boler American and 1979 Trillium 4500
Ontario
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Originally Posted by Island Claire View Post
The Trillium logo is not trademark protected so it is not an issue.
I would not be so sure about that. Have a look at the TrilliumRV home page, it sure looks like a protection mark beside the logo.
trilliumrv.com
I know that Tom has been very protective of the brand name. I don't think he will go too gung ho on someone reproducing the logo while restoring their trailer. If you think about it the logo is being applied to an original Trillium trailer. That is quite a bit different than putting a Trillium logo on something other than a Trillium trailer. The logo was not used on the Outback or the Sidekick because they were not a true Trillium.

On Edit: I see the earlier Outbacks had the Trillium logo on the door, that was later removed.
The Great West Van Legend and Sidekick did have the logo in the door, but Tom was somehow part of that venture. They used the molds, but not the brand name.

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Originally Posted by Chris McVeigh View Post
Got my decal a few weeks ago from Trillium RV parts site.
Glad to see you finally took part in the group buy.
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Old 09-11-2016, 09:46 AM   #14
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Name: Jennifer
Trailer: Randy Bishop's 1978 Trillium 4500
California
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Originally Posted by Randy J. View Post
Looks pretty much like our '76 did. Our rock guards had embedded dirt and when I tried to clean them the fiberglass started to fray (it had a bit already, just got worse). You don't want those tiny particles of glass in your trailer!

What I did: I was in a hurry and so replaced all three panels with fairly thin aluminum, putting a new decal on the center. The panels were prefinished white but look pretty good.

If I had it to do over again, I might try cleaning up the old fiberglass panels and giving them several coats of two-part polyester resin to control the fibres, followed by a suitable paint.

I found the panels fairly easy to get out - just undo the screws in the aluminum frame (don't lose 'em!). And I replaced the plastic spacers with the double-thick sticky one side weather stripping.

Thank you for this advice. I might do this.

Jen
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