Another question, sorry. How long does it take for a camper to offgas thoroughly? - Fiberglass RV


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Old 08-14-2016, 10:25 PM   #1
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Name: Margaret
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Another question, sorry. How long does it take for a camper to offgas thoroughly?

I think most of you know I'm chemically sensitive, and yes, I'm STILL going to buy a camper Dadgumit!

I'm just wondering, in your experience (anyone), how long did it take for your fiberglass camper to offgas completely, i.e. virtually no fumes or smells?

Margaret
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Old 08-15-2016, 02:03 AM   #2
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Originally Posted by Lonely Road View Post
I think most of you know I'm chemically sensitive, and yes, I'm STILL going to buy a camper Dadgumit!
I'm just wondering, in your experience (anyone), how long did it take for your fiberglass camper to offgas completely, i.e. virtually no fumes or smells?
Margaret
Margaret, my SD was 6 years old when I bought it. Can't say that it had any "offgassing" smells. It hadn't been used in the two years the second owner had it.....health problems. It was parked in Encinitas Ca, not to far from the Pacific Ocean. Other than a kind of closed up smell, like a long closed up room, there was nothing that a 30 minute airing out didn't take care of. I can tell you that when I was looking at new stick trailers that walking into some of them would make my eyes water from the glue/materials and such from how they're built. Molded trailers don't use the wood products like stickys do. I've done a lot of FG work on my dune buggy and the resin smell goes away in a couple days. So, with out going back through all your posts I have to ask, have you gone to any rallies or been in any FG TTs to see for yourself how they may affect you? Others have mentioned a sensitivity also but every ones reactions are different. All we can do for you is toss out our ideas but you need to get into and experience a number of trailers to see how or if they affect you and let us know.
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Old 08-15-2016, 08:57 AM   #3
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Name: Steve
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When my trailer was 25 years old when I bought it it had no chemical smells. That was before I cleaned it up and then put in my own new round of chemical smells. A big one for you is putting in new foam, especially the memory foam mattress and pillows. If I was really worried about chemical off gassing I would look for at least a 6 year old trailer from a western state that has spent its life outdoors. I would avoid buying a trailer from predominately wet states due to a chance of hidden mold issues. The one issue you may run into especially with younger trailers is the owners love them and are proud so they will give the trailer a really good cleaning before the new buyer comes to look at it. This may peak your sensitivities.
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Old 08-15-2016, 12:05 PM   #4
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Why are you asking health and safety questions from people who don't have degrees in chemical engineering? If you want to know the answers to how long does vinyl ester resin give off styrene curing fumes you should ask that question of the companies who make the products as the law requires they furnish that information to customers

Right now you are asking people their opinions but you are asking them does your trailer smell and for how long does it smell? That will not provide you with reliable data to protect your health. Some chemicals that can harm you have no smell, others that smell strongly do little to no harm. Your nose is not a reliable indicator of what is what but I understand that you would like it to be.
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Old 08-15-2016, 02:10 PM   #5
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off gassing

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Originally Posted by k corbin View Post
Why are you asking health and safety questions from people who don't have degrees in chemical engineering? If you want to know the answers to how long does vinyl ester resin give off styrene curing fumes you should ask that question of the companies who make the products as the law requires they furnish that information to customers

Right now you are asking people their opinions but you are asking them does your trailer smell and for how long does it smell? That will not provide you with reliable data to protect your health. Some chemicals that can harm you have no smell, others that smell strongly do little to no harm. Your nose is not a reliable indicator of what is what but I understand that you would like it to be.
well said!
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Old 08-15-2016, 09:20 PM   #6
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The stuff that made my eyes sting in my former stick-built trailers usually dissipated within about a year and a half.
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Old 08-15-2016, 09:45 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by k corbin View Post
Why are you asking health and safety questions from people who don't have degrees in chemical engineering? If you want to know the answers to how long does vinyl ester resin give off styrene curing fumes you should ask that question of the companies who make the products as the law requires they furnish that information to customers

Right now you are asking people their opinions but you are asking them does your trailer smell and for how long does it smell? That will not provide you with reliable data to protect your health. Some chemicals that can harm you have no smell, others that smell strongly do little to no harm. Your nose is not a reliable indicator of what is what but I understand that you would like it to be.
I didn't see anything in the OP question related to health. Think it was asking about the stink factor.
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Old 08-15-2016, 10:12 PM   #8
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I didn't see anything in the OP question related to health. Think it was asking about the stink factor.
She is asking because she is chemically sensitive. Being chemically sensitive is indeed a health issue that can have major impact on an individual in many different ways. Unfortunately the only way to know if any particular used RV is going to be suitable is for her to actually spend time in it.
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Old 08-15-2016, 11:44 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by k corbin View Post
She is asking because she is chemically sensitive. Being chemically sensitive is indeed a health issue that can have major impact on an individual in many different ways. Unfortunately the only way to know if any particular used RV is going to be suitable is for her to actually spend time in it.
That's your interpretation.
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Old 08-16-2016, 12:17 AM   #10
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That's your interpretation.
What is my interpretation? That she is chemically sensitive? She has stated so quite a few times in various threads she has posted.

That she has health problems associated with being chemically sensitive? She has also stated that a number of times in this forum. She is also very sensitive to mold.

She also has a significant number of other health issues she has discussed in this forum, knees, back and her hands among them. I do feel for her, it does not make her life easy. I do hope she finds a suitable fiberglass RV to live in full time which is her plan and that is also something that she has also discussed a number of times in this forum including why she wants to do this.
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Old 08-16-2016, 01:54 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by k corbin View Post
Why are you asking health and safety questions from people who don't have degrees in chemical engineering? If you want to know the answers to how long does vinyl ester resin give off styrene curing fumes you should ask that question of the companies who make the products as the law requires they furnish that information to customers
Right now you are asking people their opinions but you are asking them does your trailer smell and for how long does it smell? That will not provide you with reliable data to protect your health. Some chemicals that can harm you have no smell, others that smell strongly do little to no harm. Your nose is not a reliable indicator of what is what but I understand that you would like it to be.
KC, the OPs question was ask of owners experiences with offgassing of their trailers which has been answered by some. Nothing was asked by her of having a chemical engineer answering or getting involved. She has also said she feels better being in a different state than NC. My wife lived in NC for 10 years, didn't have a health problem with mold but the wet/humid didn't help her. A move from there to a dry climate may be a huge improvement in her health like many have done.
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Old 08-16-2016, 07:42 AM   #12
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Name: John Michael
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We picked up our Scamp in January. When we arrived in Backus it was sitting outside buttoned up and weather tight. It did smell a bit when we opened the door and I am glad we did not spend the night inside that first week. Then we were off for 6 weeks. No problems. Still we keep the roof vent open 24/7/365 using a Camco all weather cover.

The best would be to take Summer delivery and let the trailer cook in the sun for a few days with the windows open. Or run the fan for a week or so. The off gassing lessens over time. Buying a non-smoker's used 2 year old trailer might be best for the chemically sensitive.
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Old 08-16-2016, 08:03 AM   #13
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Name: Jennifer
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The problem is that while some off gassing is stinky, others actually increase as the object ages and are odorless. The pvc vinyl shower curtain I used before knowing better, for example....the danger was in the longer term odorless off gassing, not the initial stink that went away!
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Old 08-16-2016, 10:56 AM   #14
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The question of off-gassing and harmful chemicals is one all of us should consider when acquiring any product/food. Because this is a known health issue for you, you need to be as knowledgeable as possible in your purchase of a trailer, fiberglass or not, new or used.

I Googled "off gassing in new fiberglass trailers" and found this reply, among others. I suggest you make the same Google search for other comments. Anyone concenred about the fiberglass off-gassing? | Scamp Owners International

There are several organizations that address chemical sensitivity as there has been an increase in recognizing this condition as well as for "everyday" folks (for lack of a better description) who care deeply about chemicals that surround us. Google "Chemical Sensitivity Organizations".

When we picked up our new Scamp from the manufacturer in Minnesota we noticed the off-gassing smell. I did not like it, but we had few options and drove, and slept in, the new trailer to our home in California. We kept doors and window open as much as possible. I couldn't tell you when the smell subsided but suggest, when storing the trailer, that you keep it outdoors with windows, roof vents and door open.

I did notice that at the Scamp manufacturing plant that they had several trailers parked outside. They told us that some of them had been ordered but the customers had changed their minds and these trailers were for sale as is.

Perhaps Scamp could build your trailer to your specifications and keep it on their lot vented outdoors for a couple months. Perhaps you could have someone other than yourself pick up and deliver the trailer to you. Perhaps you could have Scamp deliver the trailer to you.

In addition to the fiberglass itself, other items in the Scamp trailer that may have problematic chemicals are:
  1. The cabinet doors and bench hatches are made of pressed wood. You might order the trailer without cabinet doors and hatches, ask for the hinges and knobs, and make your own doors/hatches out of real wood.
  2. The adhesive used to glue on any number of things including flooring and "rat fur" used on the walls. You could ask that these NOT be adhered and use your own adhesive (I don't know what that would be) or ask Scamp to use your requested adhesive. (I'm not sure I would rely on them to do this unless I was there to supervise as they have their usual way of assembly)
  3. The floor itself. Ask that they leave off the flooring and/or give you the flooring and seam covering for you to apply.
  4. I found that my new Scamp had lots of "shavings" that dropped into the wheel well and inside cabinets and benches and smelled. You could ask Scamp to vacuum those and others that drop in the process of manufacture.
  5. The cushions: Both the fabric and the foam. You could have cushion covers made out of a natural fabric without chemical additives such as cotton or wool. I don't think Scamp will do this for you. Latex is a natural rubber foam which is, as far as I know, chemical free. Note: latex is heavy. IKEA sells latex pads.
  6. Sealant is used on all the seams and rivets. This could be toxic.
  7. The sink and icebox are made of plastics.
I realize that the options I've suggested may add to the cost of your trailer and I'm guessing that there may be many other items, depending on the options you request, that will have chemicals that do not agree with you. You are very smart to do "due diligence" before ordering your trailer.

I do hope you find your "dream trailer" and have "happy trails" ahead!

Note: I do see, in one of your previous postings, that you have found a website devoted to non-toxic issues http://www.mychemicalfreehouse.net.
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