1976 Ventura Camper - Need some advice / help - Fiberglass RV


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 07-17-2014, 01:26 AM   #1
Junior Member
 
Name: Shawn
Trailer: Ventura
Saskatchewan
Posts: 23
1976 Ventura Camper - Need some advice / help

Hello All,
First off, what an awesome site! I purchased this trailer from my fiance's cousin this past weekend, got a really good deal on it. It is in pretty good shape, there were a few minor issues but nothing too serious. My plan was to add some new curtains, change the seat cushions and maybe paint it. Well that quickly changed, the fridge 12v/120v isnt working, the propane part was, however we still found it to be too small. My fiance believes we dont need a sink so she wanted that out. Long story short the trailer has almost been completely gutted, need to remove the wood panels and floor still. We are redoing the entire camper, inside and out.

Here are my plans - Please give me your thoughts as I am completely new to this but very ambitious and love a challenge.

Table / fold down bed will remain where they are, just going to rebuild the benches and the table.

Sink, water tank, pumps all completely removed - No need for this as we usually wash our dishes in a basin on a picnic table and pack our own jug of water.

Replace fridge with a Nova Kool R4500 - They arent cheap but there is a lot more room in them. I know it doesnt have a propane hookup but we usually camp at sites with electricity and can use the 12v when driving or dont have electricity - Considering 100w solar panel on roof, have not looked too deep into this yet.

Entire counter moved to other wall - As soon as you walk in the door and look right you will have the fridge, stove, counter / drawers, and possibly a furnace.(once I am done)

Now the wall where the sink, fridge and stove use to be will be a long bench, from the bench seat at the table to the opposite wall. Storage will be below it. I want to design it so under the cushion is the matching counter top, if you remove the cushion the top will lift up in a clocking motion and lock at the same height as the rest of the counter, now you will have a large "L" shaped counter, perfect for prepping meals or making drinks!

Furnace - Trying to decide what to do, I believe it works but I am having some trouble with it right now. It is a Coleman 9210, I can get the pilot light lit but whenever I let go of the pilot button the flame goes out. I was told from the seller that it needs a new Thermocouple so I went to Rona and purchased a universal thermocouple from honeywell that basically fit in there fine, I assume I can use this Thermocouple, can anyone shed light on that?. I was reading on another post on here that maybe the thermocouple is not in the correct spot or heating up enough, I will try tomorrow to heat the thermocouple with a small torch while the pilot light is on and see if that was the cause.

That being said, we are planning on moving the furnace as well. It was located to the left of the door as you walk in at the base of a cabinet but we would like to move it to the front of the trailer below the fridge, or stove / cupboards. I was thinking we might replace the entire furnace and get the Propex HS2000 - its about $900 shipped. Thoughts on this?

Stove will be replaced with a new stove, I believe they are $100-$200.

Custom cupboards, cabinets, new flooring, new walls, new LED lighting, new electrical.

Now for the outside, need to patch the 3 large open areas where the furnace and fridge use to vent and then all the smaller holes where the drains for the sink use to be. I also want to remove the fiberglass portion off the base and have that sandblasted and painted, its in pretty good shape right now just slightly rusted, I believe it would come out nice and last a long time. It towed fine, the drive was 7 hours and had no issues, however if I do all that I feel I thought have the axle looked at as well as the brakes and tires.
Parts of the fiberglass are cracking, its not right through but I would like to fix this up, from what I have read online repairing fiberglass looks pretty straight forward.. Going to cover all the holes, maybe make a few new ones if needed, and paint the camper to look like new!

I know this was a lot, and I am overtired right now so not sure how much makes sense but if you have made it this far I really do appreciate it, any feedback will be greatly appreciated, good or bad. Thanks again!

P.S I have attached a bunch of pictures, some of the before and progress, there is also pictures of the stuff I removed and will hold onto for the meantime, should I keep those old lights and old cupboards, is there ademand for that?

P.P.S since I have tried to post 18 pictures that is not allowed, here is a link to the album I uploaded.
Postimage.org / gallery - SDC10494, SDC10495, SDC10496, SDC10497, SDC10499, SDC10500, SDC10504




















__________________

__________________
Merc1fuL is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-17-2014, 01:47 AM   #2
Senior Member
 
Borrego Dave's Avatar
 
Name: Dave
Trailer: Casita SD17 2006
California
Posts: 2,916
Shawn make sure the thurmo is over the pilot flame. As far as fiberglass cracks I always open it up a bit at an angle, drill a hole at the end to keep it from cracking farther and glass it with matting from the inside for strength. Not sure of your trailer shell for getting at the rear of the FG.
__________________

__________________
Borrego Dave is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-18-2014, 11:58 PM   #3
Junior Member
 
Name: Shawn
Trailer: Ventura
Saskatchewan
Posts: 23
Thanks for the tips Dave! I have got the furnace working, I cleaned out the tune the pilot gas comes from and it throws a lot more heat now. I have not yet started the fiberglass but I will try that when I start. Anyone else have an suggestions for the rest? I know it's long but I'm new to this :-) Click image for larger version

Name:	ImageUploadedByFiberglass RV1405745863.600498.jpg
Views:	46
Size:	80.0 KB
ID:	73818 little update


Sent from my iPhone using Fiberglass RV
__________________
Merc1fuL is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-22-2014, 07:04 PM   #4
Senior Member
 
Dudley's Avatar
 
Name: David
Trailer: 1998 Casita 17 SD
Alberta
Posts: 664
Registry
Just remember that the cupboards and closet also support the roof and without them you will have a mess on your hands. The roof is very weak with just some 1x2 strapping that has been kerfed so it would form to the curve of the roof. Mine were all cracked. I glued them with epoxy and added some 1x1 aluminum tubing arched to fit. I think the spider cracks in the venturas is caused by the snow load in our tough winters. It is usually only on the top half and mostly around the windows. Mine was cracked right through above the rear window.

Look forward to see the redo. We sold ours a few months back and moved up to a 17' Casita.

BTW pulling the plywood floor is a nightmare as it was set in place while the fiberglass shell was setting up so its glued down very well.

We did ours in tongue and groove pine

New look for and old Ventura
__________________
Dudley is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-23-2014, 08:49 PM   #5
Junior Member
 
Name: Shawn
Trailer: Ventura
Saskatchewan
Posts: 23
Hey thanks for the reply David, I have read your thread and your remodel looks great!
Thanks so much for the advice about bracing the roof, I plan on replacing the cupboards but did not consider additional bracing until now.
Funny I have the exact same crack above the read window, its right through and appox 6 inches long.
Yes the floor is giving me a lot of trouble, I started to try and pull it up but its really difficult, I stopped because I was afraid of damaging the fiberglass below it. Any advice on getting the wood off? Its not that bad but in the corners it looks like it should be replaced, I figured since I am going this far I might as well do the floor too!
I hope its okay but I may come to you with some questions as I continue this remodel, yours looks great and I am sure you could help me a great deal!
On a sidebar, we picked out trailer up from red deer! Probably not to far from you.
__________________
Merc1fuL is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-23-2014, 09:19 PM   #6
Junior Member
 
Name: Shawn
Trailer: Ventura
Saskatchewan
Posts: 23
Click image for larger version

Name:	ImageUploadedByFiberglass RV1406168147.569957.jpg
Views:	41
Size:	108.8 KB
ID:	74017Click image for larger version

Name:	ImageUploadedByFiberglass RV1406168195.976145.jpg
Views:	36
Size:	89.0 KB
ID:	74018Click image for larger version

Name:	ImageUploadedByFiberglass RV1406168241.132632.jpg
Views:	34
Size:	101.7 KB
ID:	74019Click image for larger version

Name:	ImageUploadedByFiberglass RV1406168268.334472.jpg
Views:	30
Size:	127.9 KB
ID:	74020Click image for larger version

Name:	ImageUploadedByFiberglass RV1406168286.953319.jpg
Views:	27
Size:	91.1 KB
ID:	74021Click image for larger version

Name:	ImageUploadedByFiberglass RV1406168313.750507.jpg
Views:	27
Size:	92.6 KB
ID:	74022Click image for larger version

Name:	ImageUploadedByFiberglass RV1406168333.787194.jpg
Views:	30
Size:	91.7 KB
ID:	74023
A little progress update, completely gutted, and the worst of the gel coat / fiberglass damage.


Sent from my iPhone using Fiberglass RV
__________________
Merc1fuL is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-24-2014, 09:36 AM   #7
Senior Member
 
Dudley's Avatar
 
Name: David
Trailer: 1998 Casita 17 SD
Alberta
Posts: 664
Registry
looks like mine! What I did for the floor , was to replace the small section between the front seats and under the fridge. The rest I used a product called Gritrot to harden up what was left. I then painted the floor and used a floating vinyl floor so if it got wet, I could pull it up to dry.

For the major crack, patch it from the inside, then grind a v from the outside and fiberglass and bondo. I used a rubber rv roof paint from Rona or Canadian Tire rather than trying to fix all the cracks. This worked good but was a pain to clean so I painted it with a plastic paint from Roma. BTW its a good time to replace those marker lights while the wiring is exposed.

Heading out for a few days of camping!
__________________
Dudley is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-16-2014, 10:12 AM   #8
Junior Member
 
Name: Shawn
Trailer: Ventura
Saskatchewan
Posts: 23
Click image for larger version

Name:	ImageUploadedByFiberglass RV1408201620.537050.jpg
Views:	34
Size:	186.0 KB
ID:	74916Click image for larger version

Name:	ImageUploadedByFiberglass RV1408201648.407485.jpg
Views:	27
Size:	120.7 KB
ID:	74917Click image for larger version

Name:	ImageUploadedByFiberglass RV1408201667.295666.jpg
Views:	26
Size:	159.0 KB
ID:	74918Click image for larger version

Name:	ImageUploadedByFiberglass RV1408201688.379962.jpg
Views:	25
Size:	96.1 KB
ID:	74919Click image for larger version

Name:	ImageUploadedByFiberglass RV1408201727.138228.jpg
Views:	46
Size:	136.4 KB
ID:	74920Click image for larger version

Name:	ImageUploadedByFiberglass RV1408201746.571641.jpg
Views:	24
Size:	149.3 KB
ID:	74921Click image for larger version

Name:	ImageUploadedByFiberglass RV1408201760.915816.jpg
Views:	24
Size:	108.1 KB
ID:	74922
Here are some progress shots.. Lifted fiberglass camper of metal frame, removed all surface rust and painted with tremclad, looks great, also greased wheel bearings and began fiberglassing large holes where furnace use to be as well as fridge.

Can anyone tell me what these handles are for along the top of the trailer on each corner?? I assume it was for the factory to lift and move the fiber glass but want to confirm before I remove them.
Also there are holes cut in the wood on the floor behind each wheel well, does anyone know what those are for??
Thanks for any help!


Sent from my iPhone using Fiberglass RV
__________________
Merc1fuL is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-16-2014, 10:18 AM   #9
Senior Member
 
Dudley's Avatar
 
Name: David
Trailer: 1998 Casita 17 SD
Alberta
Posts: 664
Registry
They are not factory and my guess is someone added a rack for a boat or something.

Again the cutouts in the floor are not factory and they may have been added to clean out under the floor as mine had water under there. They may also been a hiding spot for something.
__________________
Dudley is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-16-2014, 10:29 AM   #10
Junior Member
 
Name: Shawn
Trailer: Ventura
Saskatchewan
Posts: 23
Wow fast response! Much appreciated Dudley! Hope your getting out camping as much as possible!


Sent from my iPhone using Fiberglass RV
__________________
Merc1fuL is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-28-2014, 10:31 PM   #11
Junior Member
 
Luc Riezebos's Avatar
 
Name: Luc
Trailer: Ventura 400
Manitoba
Posts: 24
Registry
I would agree that the brackets are not factory. One thing I would check is the belly band around the middle. I am 90% through repairing my 1976 Ventura. I found a lot of rot in mine and found the upper half was not fiberglassed to the lower so removed bellyband and fiberglassed both halves together. No more leaks from there! I also gutted and redid my interior in pine but went horizontal rather than vertical as dudley did. I insulated with Styrofoam for more rigidity in the walls and ceiling. I have pulled the trailer more than 20,000 kms this year and aside from a few small issues it is doing well.
__________________
Luc Riezebos is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-12-2015, 11:44 AM   #12
Junior Member
 
Name: Shawn
Trailer: Ventura
Saskatchewan
Posts: 23
Update time!!
Well what a long cold winter in Saskatchewan. I have made some slight progress and cant wait to finish this girl off this spring / summer.
I have finally pulled the entire plywood flooring up, and to echo what Dudley said, it was a PITA!! However, I have replaced it with 1/2" treated plywood so hopefully I wont have to worry about it again.
I have also fiberglassed all of the old vent holes where the fridge and furnace used to be, need to do some bondo work next. Over the winter I purchased a Propex HS2000 heater and recently purchased a Dometic RM2354 Americana 3 way fridge! Cant wait to pick it up.
I decided to I am going to install 2 6V Trojan T-105 batteries hooked up in series, with all new LED lighting.
This project has become quite extreme but when it is finished it, it will be worth every penny, blood, sweat and tear I have put into it! (Not to mention it helps keep me out of trouble).
Will post pictures later on, felt as though I have been neglecting my original post!
__________________
Merc1fuL is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-12-2015, 11:53 AM   #13
Junior Member
 
Name: Shawn
Trailer: Ventura
Saskatchewan
Posts: 23
Also question for you Dudley, when you talk about bracing the roof with 1x1 tubing, do you just screw it to the bottom side and lose 1" of ceiling height ? or would you to it next to it and cut / removed some of the wood that runs the opposite way?
__________________
Merc1fuL is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-12-2015, 01:18 PM   #14
Senior Member
 
Dudley's Avatar
 
Name: David
Trailer: 1998 Casita 17 SD
Alberta
Posts: 664
Registry
what I did was arch it (bend it before installing) to closely match the wood and screwed it to the sides of the wood, that way I did not loose any height I think I screwed it in about 6 or 8 places. I also had forced the roof up a bit with bracing so it had a bit more arc that what I began with. The problem with the original braces was the had been kerf cut to bend them and that weakened them.

Wish I had taken pictures, I think I used 3/4 in tubing so it matched the thickness of the wood
__________________

__________________
Dudley is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
ventura


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Need some advice... Sharry B Problem Solving | Owners Helping Owners 6 09-09-2013 12:49 PM
Traveling from Green Bay WI to Columbus Ohio need some advice Kevin K Problem Solving | Owners Helping Owners 2 09-05-2013 02:33 PM
New to the site and need some advice. Trooper11 Hi, I am.... 20 06-06-2012 08:31 AM
Need some advice on window replacement Ted B. Problem Solving | Owners Helping Owners 4 08-04-2008 05:32 PM
1976 10Ft Ventura Model 400D D McComber Classified Archives 0 05-28-2007 05:50 PM

» Upcoming Events
No events scheduled in
the next 465 days.
» Virginia Campgrounds

Reviews provided by


Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 05:21 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.