Compact Jr. Pop Top canvas question - Fiberglass RV


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Old 05-29-2013, 07:27 PM   #1
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Compact Jr. Pop Top canvas question

Hello All...

I'm looking at buying a Compact Jr from a guy who's been using it for years as his hunting camp. It's ROUGH to say the least, but I'm telling my husband that it's a "diamond in the rough". Can I still get the canvas for the pop top? Are Compact Jr's still considered "rare"? I used to have a Uhaul 16ft VT, recently sold my Apache camper (ABS hardside pop up) and now am eyeing this Compact Jr. I'm a Vintage Freak!! I already have it decorated in my head, and that's before I scrub the mold off of it!

Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated....
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Old 05-29-2013, 07:56 PM   #2
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Hi Carol, to FiberglassRV, we're glad you're here.

Rare? Humm, that's in the eye of the beholder, and REALLY does it make a difference whether you buy it or make it more "valuable"? Not to me (YMMV) Diamond in the rough? If you're up to all the fixin' needed, I think you'd have a neato trailer.

There are several folks right in the midst of rehabing Compacts (and kissin' cousins), they'd probably be your best resource for the canvas.
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Old 05-29-2013, 08:27 PM   #3
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Not sure what the original canvas was, but VW bus camper sellers usually have some kind of fabric they consider original to those. I don't think it matters, though as they aren't rare enough or well known enough for an authentic restoration to improve value.
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Old 05-29-2013, 09:24 PM   #4
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It would help if you had the old one for a pattern , but I got an estimate from Shaw's tent and awning to reproduce it for under $200 including the screens with built-in covers.
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Old 05-29-2013, 10:08 PM   #5
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It would help if you had the old one for a pattern , but I got an estimate from Shaw's tent and awning to reproduce it for under $200 including the screens with built-in covers.
That was going to be my next question!! Thank you Sir!
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Old 05-29-2013, 10:24 PM   #6
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Last year I restored the boot on my Hunter Compact-II, but even that (new screens and window covers) cost $200.

I got three estimates for all new material from local canvas shops hereabouts (SoCal) and all were between $450 & $600. At that, $200 would be a bargain.
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Old 05-29-2013, 10:27 PM   #7
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From experience I restored a 71 Compact Jr. It is has been sitting for years before you tow it home replace the tires and check the bearings. It could have 4 lug wheels which are hard to find. Look over the interior wood, check the top for straightness. If sway belly in the center you will have problems installing the canvas. I had a friend make the canvas it was difficult to install. Check the wood floor for rot.
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Old 05-31-2013, 12:00 AM   #8
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Vintage collectible?, in the eye of the beholder! Agree with everything said above. Did I just echo Donna's statement.

If you want the trailer to use for yourself, then great. If the shell is in reasonable condition without cracks, or additional holes. Inspect the tongue as many have rebuilt or strengthened. The interior is easily to replace IMHO, as I have completely rebuilt mine with the original configuration. Not all Compact Jr.'s have insulation, and you should consider this depending on where you live, and the climate you expect to camp in.

Perfect timing for your question, as I am at the stage of finding a seamstress to duplicate a top skirt. I was lucky to have meet a Compact Jr. owner here on the forum, and he gave me his original old skirt to use as a template. I will surely pay it forward by not discarding it when I am finished. What state do you live in?

@Floyd was that a canvas for a Compact Jr. or a Scamp? Are you happy with what was made for you? Would you recommend the same vendor for others here on the forum?
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Old 05-31-2013, 12:16 AM   #9
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Alas....I was "out bid" by another interested party that arrived after I did to view the trailer...it needed A LOT of work especially on the rusty frame. The guy told me it was "road worthy" but I was seriously considering having it trailered home on a flat bed. The tires had no tread, well...not that I could see by digging them out of the mud anyway..It was kinda weird...guy pulls up and walks around it the same time I'm talking to the seller and offered him more than he was asking... The seller totally blows me off and starts talking to this other guy like I wasn't even there...We weren't talking thousands of dollars difference, we were talking a couple of hundred...I might be stupid, but I'm not giving someone more than they want for something they're selling... The search continues...

Thanks for all your input..If nothing else, I learned a few things over the past couple of days.
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Old 05-31-2013, 09:07 AM   #10
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There are 3-4 Hunter/Campster trailers currently listed on fiberglass-rv-4sale.com. Look under For Sale-US and Other Makes.

Sounds like you lucked out though. I have almost never seen worn out tires on a trailer that weren't so far out of date that it wasn't safe to move much less pull down the highway.

Remember, it's almost always cheaper to buy a decent trailer than to put a long-gone fixer back on the road, That is unless one is really into pain, handcuffs and whips etc.
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Old 05-31-2013, 10:02 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob Miller View Post
Last year I restored the boot on my Hunter Compact-II, but even that (new screens and window covers) cost $200.

I got three estimates for all new material from local canvas shops hereabouts (SoCal) and all were between $450 & $600. At that, $200 would be a bargain.
Don't forget though , you live in California... Here in the U.S. things sometimes cost less.
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Old 05-31-2013, 08:29 PM   #12
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Considering that standard, 3 sided VW/Westy replacement canvas runs over $300 at the Bus Depot in PA, asking $450 for a custom made product isn't all that much and, with about $100 in materials for a quality build, $200 doesn't leave much room for labor. As I said, that's a bargain.

Beside that, here in the California Republic (aka "California" to others) $450 is only about 2 days pay at our current minimum wage.
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Old 05-31-2013, 10:09 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob Miller View Post
Considering that standard, 3 sided VW/Westy replacement canvas runs over $300 at the Bus Depot in PA, asking $450 for a custom made product isn't all that much and, with about $100 in materials for a quality build, $200 doesn't leave much room for labor. As I said, that's a bargain.

Beside that, here in the California Republic (aka "California" to others) $450 is only about 2 days pay at our current minimum wage.
I hear ya!
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Old 05-31-2013, 11:42 PM   #14
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Sorry you lost out on the trailer.

I'm rehabbing a '74 Hunter I, sewed my own pop-top replacement canvas. Cost about $75 in materials and about 15 hours of my time. I put zippers on the windows instead of velcro even though I hate sewing zippers since they work smoother than the velcro. I had the old vinyl as a pattern. At this point I agree $200 would have been cheap.

I'm still looking for a 4 lug wheel for a spare tire.
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