Cutting in a New Window ? - Fiberglass RV


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Old 02-19-2009, 12:16 PM   #1
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I've been thinking about cutting a window in the front of my Horizon camper. It doesn't have any window in the front right now, but thinking back to my old Bigfoot I do miss that window. Here is my question, if I get a window like on Ebay without a rock guard , where can I get one(cover/rockguard) or could I make one for it. I can get one in white w/rockguard, but the rest of the windows are black. I have also been thinking about getting one that opens up on the lower half, so to get more ventilation in. Any thoughts or ideas would be appreciated.

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Old 02-19-2009, 03:48 PM   #2
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I know nothing about Horizon campers so this is only a guess. It looks to me that a window cut in front would hamper the integrity of the shell(s) and cause you problems. I would only do it if you greatly reinforced the area around the window to accomidate for the loss of structure.

Am I right in that the Horzon is a egg with a left/right shell as compared to Scamp type with a bottom/top shell?
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Old 02-19-2009, 03:48 PM   #3
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I haven't seen a Horizon before but it looks like your trailer body has a seam down the middle where the left and right halves are joined.

Putting a window across that seam would require some very clever work so that the window sealed to the body where it crosses the seam.

It would be a lot easier to put in two smaller windows, one either side of the seam (if it really is a seam and not just a graphic stripe).

Andrew
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Old 02-19-2009, 05:16 PM   #4
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Yes the Horizon is an egg, or fiberglass trailer. I would compare it to the Bigfoot with foam insulation about 1" thick. And its put together kinda like a Burro with the two vertical halfs. There is a door in the back like a Compact Jr. also. I'm not sure if it would hurt the shell putting in a window across the seam. But I do like the idea of two windows which I didn't think about. I would still have to make/buy some type of rock guard being this will be in the front of the trailer. I'm going to have to give this some serious thought before doing any cutting , that's for sure. I have seen Burro's with a window in the front, so I thought why not the Horizon. One thing I wanted to ad is the front does slope back a little, don't know if you can tell from the pic. I don't think this will matter much , but wanted to mention.
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Old 02-19-2009, 07:10 PM   #5
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Well, if you didn't want to deal with the seam, how about two smaller windows, one on each side? Scamp's gravel guard OEM is made out of the part of the shell they cut out. If an individual orders a trailer and a gravel guard at the same time, the guard has the same compound curve as the front of the trailer. After market does not have the curve.... it's a flat piece of fiberglass (ask me how I know!) So, if you're going to put in a window(s) you too may be able to save the fiberglass that was cut out to make your gravel guard.

Have you gone to a wrecking yard (with measurements in hand) to see if you can get a window out of a conversion van? We have a wrecking yard that sells anything you can haul out (unaided) in your hands and arms... for $25. It's a You-Pull-It joint.

Just a couple of ideas
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Old 02-19-2009, 07:30 PM   #6
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Donna, Good idea about saving the fiberglass for the stone guard, and the front of my Horizon is pretty flat other than it sloping a bit toward the back. I can get a brand new white window w/stone guard for 80.00 with the shocks for the guard. But they didn't have them in black, I suppose I could always paint the trim ring that goes inside to match the other windows. I really don't care about the outside matching as with the stone guard down in place you wouldn't see the window anyway. But if I did go with two windows I would save the cutout for the stone guard.
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Old 02-20-2009, 12:29 AM   #7
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Scamp's gravel guard OEM is made out of the part of the shell they cut out. If an individual orders a trailer and a gravel guard at the same time, the guard has the same compound curve as the front of the trailer. After market does not have the curve.... it's a flat piece of fiberglass (ask me how I know!)
I'm sorry to butt into the thread here, but Donna, I was considering ordering a gravel guard from Scamp for my Boler. They mentioned having several sizes (I have yet to precisely measure and get back to them), but they never mentioned that they would be flat! I had the impression that they would be curved like the front of the trailer, I would only want one if that were so. Is the after market one that is "how you know" one that came right from Scamp?

Thanks,
Raya

PS: To contribute on topic, if the Horizon is an egg that does not rely on a wooden frame, then I wouldn't think that cutting a window into the front would endanger the structural integrity. On the other hand, I could see the seam being a problem. Although the U-haul and Burros with a seam have a front window, the window is in a special flat "ring" molded into the trailer, that I would think (?) somewhat takes the seam out of the equation, in terms of getting a seal.

Here is a photo of what I mean:


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Of course the two-window idea would get around that.
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Old 02-20-2009, 01:06 AM   #8
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I don't think the gravel guard is made from the cut-out for the window -- Mine (91S13) is larger than the window hole...

I believe the flat one is for the REAR window.

BTW, unless you want the privacy, the gravel guard may not be very important -- Check the existing shell in the area where it will be cut out and see how many rock-chips exist -- I have very few chips in my gravel guard, even after a summer of wandering around Alaska, Yukon Terr, etc. and a lot of gravel travel in EhLand and the Lower 48!
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Old 02-20-2009, 05:44 AM   #9
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I'm sorry to butt into the thread here, but Donna, I was considering ordering a gravel guard from Scamp for my Boler. They mentioned having several sizes (I have yet to precisely measure and get back to them), but they never mentioned that they would be flat! I had the impression that they would be curved like the front of the trailer, I would only want one if that were so. Is the after market one that is "how you know" one that came right from Scamp?

Thanks,
Raya
My Scamp has the larger front window. And yes the Gravel Guard is aftermarket and is flat, no curve whatsoever. Now, I didn't hear directly from Scamp that they make the guard out of the cut out piece, that came from someone who had toured the plant. I can only impart what I know. So, the best thing would be to ask Scamp, when you order the part if it would be flat or curved. I'm not disappointed. It still works, it doesn't stick out to the point it looks weird on the ends either. I ended up mounting it so I can use it as a window awning when camping... (ala Joy A's method).

Pete, The gravel guard I have wouldn't fit the back window... they are definitely two different sizes and this one fits the front window area perfectly.

So, someone needs to ask Scamp directly.... and let us all know what's what.
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Old 02-20-2009, 07:30 AM   #10
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PS: To contribute on topic, if the Horizon is an egg that does not rely on a wooden frame, then I wouldn't think that cutting a window into the front would endanger the structural integrity. On the other hand, I could see the seam being a problem. Although the U-haul and Burros with a seam have a front window, the window is in a special flat "ring" molded into the trailer, that I would think (?) somewhat takes the seam out of the equation, in terms of getting a seal.

Raya-good point on the fiberglass rim around the window on the Burro.

BTW, unless you want the privacy, the gravel guard may not be very important -- Check the existing shell in the area where it will be cut out and see how many rock-chips exist -- I have very few chips in my gravel guard, even after a summer of wandering around Alaska, Yukon Terr, etc. and a lot of gravel travel in EhLand and the Lower 48!

Pete-also good point about maybe not needing a stone guard. Although I had one on my Bigfoot and liked using it as a awning.

I'm going to give the Horizon some going over with measurements, and to see that the front is flat and not sloped from the seam to the outsides also. I do have many mods to perform before using it this year, but I'm starting soon as spring hits. So I hope to have enough done to where I can take it camping by the later part of June.
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Old 02-20-2009, 07:44 AM   #11
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Our UHaul is missing the gravel guard. It seems to be doing fine without one, although we do not drive a lot on gravel, and we pull with a Eurovan which is really tall for a minivan. The hubby prefers it open, so he can see the traffic behind us and watch the stuff inside.

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Old 02-20-2009, 07:45 AM   #12
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I see the need for a gravel guard being much more important when the trailer has glass window(s) in the front versus the Plexiglass window in my Scamp. There are a few chips and dings in the front fiberglass, but the plexi-window also has a couple of 1/8 inch long cracks from rocks. It could ruin a camping trip if a rock goes through the front window and accidents do happen. According to Murphy's Law, always at the worst time.

I bought the gravel guard more for nighttime privacy than worrying about rocks tho. I built a permanent bunk and sleep right at the window height, I didn't want to deal with curtains. And I followed Pete Dumbleton's lead and now put backpacker foam under the gravel guard at night. Really insulates the window and has cut the condensation problem to near zero. I ended up with a win-win-win-win solution for about $50.

1. Nighttime privacy
2. Window protection during travel
3. Insulation - near zero condensation
4. Window awning

If I chose to travel with all the curtains open so I can see straight through the trailer, that's doable too because the gravel guard just lifts off. For me, I don't see any reason not to have one.
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Old 02-20-2009, 03:16 PM   #13
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My previous Jayco 16' had two front crank-out windows and a single, very lightweight fiberglass framed panel to cover them (more for rain protection and privacy than rock protection) -- It was really nice to be able to open windows in front for ventilation.
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Old 02-20-2009, 04:39 PM   #14
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Donna, I have to agree I do like the idea of a rock guard, mainly for me as an awning. And Pete yes I do also like the idea of a window that opens. In fact if I can make it work I'm thinking about putting one in that is the Exit window. Here is another shot of the Horizon, and you can see that the front does slope towards the back .
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