Bigfoot body shifted on frame... advice? - Fiberglass RV


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Old 08-04-2009, 11:55 PM   #1
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Hello everyone, what a fantastic forum! We're located in the Shuswap in BC, and are hoping for a bit of advice. We've just purchased a 2007 21' Bigfoot (R, which we knew had some hard miles and potential mechanical issues.

One of the major concerns is that it appears the fiberglass body is sitting approx 1" more toward one side of the trailer frame than the other, but appears to be sitting parallel on the frame. After closer inspection, there is evidence that the body may have at one time shifted so far over as to rub the tires and has been moved back. Accident? We're not sure how the body is held to the frame (please let it be held to the frame!), and not sure what might be involved in correcting the position.

Looking from underneath, the propane line coming up through the body appears to have remained intact through this but during "impact" looks like it has sliced across the fiberglass bed.. and is now coming up through the floor about 3" from the original hole. (It's a bit pinched). We'll need to get the line checked to make sure it doesn't leak, any other thoughts?

Also, there is evidence of damaged fiberglass on the bottom of the front corners.. some bondo along the bottom (probably attempted to cheaply fill the holes along both bottom front corners extending a bit down the sides). Some stress cracks in the paint around the propane holder and also along the back around the awning holders. We're hoping that the stress cracks just indicate some flexing of the fibreglass, does that make sense? It's our first experience with a fiberglass body, and we'll need to get the holes filled.. we'll get quotes from both rv dealers and boat repair shops, I think.

We haven't even tested all the appliances yet, we're just starting with what we figure the "big" issues might be! Sorry for being so long winded.

We're wondering if anyone has any advice to offer on how to approach this, or has dealt with shifting of this sort? Any feedback would be greatly appreciated..

Thanks so much!
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Old 08-05-2009, 07:52 AM   #2
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There is someone in Canada who is doing repairs on Big Foots only. He used to work for Big Foot when they were in business. I cant remember his name but will ask a freind here and see if he knows.

sounds like a ot of work is needed. Hope you got a good deal.

Alexandra
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Old 08-05-2009, 08:19 AM   #3
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I think Alexandra is thinking of Mark Holmes? At any rate here's his website and contact information: Holmes on Bigfoot
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Old 08-05-2009, 08:56 AM   #4
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Hi Bruce and Melissa,

Have you tried the BC Insurance website to determine if your trailer has in fact sustained damage previously? OKA a vehicle history report?

http://www.icbc.com/registration-licensing...ariables._frag_

That might be a good starting point to know what to look for in order to repair it properly.
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Old 08-05-2009, 12:19 PM   #5
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Alexandra & Donna, thanks so much - we had emailed Mike and are awaiting his reply (we came across his name in previous posts, this forum is so wonderful!). We're in his neck of the woods so hopefully he can give us some advice.

Mike, unfortunately we purchased the trailer in Alta, and from what Service Alberta, Alberta Registry and an insurance agent had told us when we were first starting to consider the trailer, Alta privacy laws are different and it's impossible to do a check like the ICBC vehicle history report... so it was a dice roll. We did what we could by running lien checks, getting pictures taken and getting a licensed RV mechanic in the area to look it over, but lesson learned there - he had given it "two thumbs up" and a "clean bill of health". But we knew we were taking a chance without being able to see it ourselves, so ultimately taking that risk was on us.

Whether it was a deal or not will depend on what all turns up, but it's a bit scary so far! We're just trying not to panic (LOL)

Thanks so much!
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Old 08-06-2009, 08:30 AM   #6
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Just another thought here....since your Big Foot was built in BC there's a chance that it's first owner/s was/were in BC. If it did sustain damage and repaired during it's life in BC before going to Alberta that could be on record...it would be a crap shoot costing 20.00 to find out but...
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Old 08-07-2009, 04:20 AM   #7
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My 2008 Bigfoot 21RB body is misaligned ˝” to the left (facing forward). It seems as body was not aligned properly at the factory. The right gap between the LP tanks fiberglass cover and the trailer body was too small which resulted with gelcoat abrasion down to fiberglass.

I discussed this issue with Mark Holmes when Bigfoot was still a life and we agreed that removing some of the fiberglass from the tanks cover to prevent the interference was the best solution. Getting into all attachment screws and bolts would require major disassembly. Some of the bolts are underneath the vinyl floor and cabinets. I increased the clearance between the tanks cover and the body and had agreement with Mark H. to have gelcoat repair cost covered by Bigfoot. With Bigfoot gone I still need to repair the gelcoat by myself.


George.


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Old 08-08-2009, 11:36 PM   #8
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Mike, that's a great idea - thanks, that didn't cross my mind. George, wow, that's good to know! And today we travelled to see Mark Holmes - Alexandra & Donna mentioned him in posts above, he used to work for Bigfoot and he was WONDERFUL!! He went all through our unit, straightened it out, tested everything and fixed some little stuff... He's a great guy and we'll use him to fix the bottom corner fiberglass damage, and anything else we need. We highly recommend him, he was very practical and knowledgeable. Thanks again, everyone, this forum is such a big help!!
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Old 08-09-2009, 08:23 AM   #9
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Mike, that's a great idea - thanks, that didn't cross my mind. George, wow, that's good to know! And today we travelled to see Mark Holmes - Alexandra & Donna mentioned him in posts above, he used to work for Bigfoot and he was WONDERFUL!! He went all through our unit, straightened it out, tested everything and fixed some little stuff... He's a great guy and we'll use him to fix the bottom corner fiberglass damage, and anything else we need. We highly recommend him, he was very practical and knowledgeable. Thanks again, everyone, this forum is such a big help!!
Glad that worked out for you.!
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Old 08-09-2009, 10:16 AM   #10
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Okay but now I'm curious what he deduced in terms of your Bigfoot being shifted over, and whether or not that was the normal placement of the trailer on the frame

I would usually figure it was too nosey to ask just out of the blue, but since you posed the problem here.... can you tell us?

Raya
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Old 08-09-2009, 12:06 PM   #11
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It's not nosey at all!

Our biggest problem, from what Mark could tell, was it seemed that the trailer had been laid over on its side at some point !

That certainly explains some of the little cosmetics, but Mark noted that someone had put significant time into fixing the trailer and mechanically it's in excellent shape (aside from regular maintenance stuff, IE bearings\brakes).

The body didn't seem attached to the frame in the rear (ack), so Mark was able to jack it up a bit and pivot it over & reattach at the rear - this removed most of the misalignment. There is a chance that there was some slight misalignment from the factory, but it's hard to tell at this point.

The trailer is safe and everything is working well, so we're feeling much better about it all!
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Old 08-09-2009, 12:50 PM   #12
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It's not nosey at all!

Our biggest problem, from what Mark could tell, was it seemed that the trailer had been laid over on its side at some point !

That certainly explains some of the little cosmetics, but Mark noted that someone had put significant time into fixing the trailer and mechanically it's in excellent shape (aside from regular maintenance stuff, IE bearings\brakes).

The body didn't seem attached to the frame in the rear (ack), so Mark was able to jack it up a bit and pivot it over & reattach at the rear - this removed most of the misalignment. There is a chance that there was some slight misalignment from the factory, but it's hard to tell at this point.

The trailer is safe and everything is working well, so we're feeling much better about it all!
I assume this means you got a good deal with not much in getting it right? Still happy you were able to get some good advice and help.

Alexandra
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Old 08-09-2009, 01:45 PM   #13
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Okay but now I'm curious what he deduced in terms of your Bigfoot being shifted over, and whether or not that was the normal placement of the trailer on the frame

I would usually figure it was too nosey to ask just out of the blue, but since you posed the problem here.... can you tell us?

Raya
.



I measured gaps between the left and right side of the body against the tongue of the frame and it is ˝” to the left. There is about 1” recess on the trailer body to accept fiberglass tanks cover. This shift resulted in interference between the body recess and the fiberglass tanks cover which is well aligned and attached to the tongue. The solution was to remove enough cover’s material on the right side of the cover to prevent the interference.



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Old 08-09-2009, 04:20 PM   #14
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We're happy so far Alexandra; we paid roughly 50% of new retail, so we expected some extra costs. Getting it ready to use at this point has involved a new $100 water pump & a bit of Mark's time. Just need bearings and brakes checked and we're ready to roll. Much better than we expected... but our fingers are crossed that nothing else major crops up!
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