Door Problem - Fiberglass RV


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Old 08-17-2007, 09:19 PM   #1
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We have a 1992 17' bigfoot and the door has started too drag on the corner furthest from the hinge side. I am able to lift on this corner and have the door shift or move from saggin crooked to square. From what I can see the door is held "square" by screws in the alluminum frame and the ones on the hinge side have worked loose or the wood they are in has deteriorated. I think I have to take the door off and disect it to see if there is a simple fix or if all the wood needs replacing. I am hopeing someone else has seen this problem before and can offer some advice before I start. I have searched the Forum and can't find a similar complaint for the bigfoot doors.
Donna and Chris
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Old 08-18-2007, 07:29 AM   #2
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I don't know if this helps, but ours does too, a little. I was going to ignore it. You might email Bigfoot Industries or check with your local dealer/service department to ask if there is an easy fix. Hopefully someone who has been through this will respond.
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Old 08-18-2007, 09:23 AM   #3
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Well, speaking of doors in general, this is a common problem. Probably a little more common in our trailers because we tend to hold on to the door handle for support as we exit. This will put quite the strain on the top hinge and it's screws. You did not say which screws are coming loose. If it is the ones that hold the hinges, this is not too hard to fix. Remove the door and drill out the loose screw holes and insert a dowel with a good wood glue of the appropriate size. If it is a screw holding the framework, you could do the same kind of fix, it just might be a bit more difficult
Bob
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Old 08-18-2007, 01:07 PM   #4
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Be sure to examine the fasteners on the trailer end of the hinges to be sure they aren't the ones that moved.
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Old 08-18-2007, 02:22 PM   #5
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I have the same problem with my trillium 5500, I read one article that said there are wooden 2x2 inside the door and that what happens is they tend to warp and cause the sag, the metal framing around the door then tends to droop, opposite the hinges .
I have not yet opened a door up, but it sounds somewhat logical.
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Old 08-22-2007, 09:45 PM   #6
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I have taken the door apart. There is a couple of factors contributing to the sagging door. The straw that broke the camels back appears to be the four screws that hold the aluminum frame to the internal wooden frame of the door on the hinge side of the door. These were all broken off about 1/4 inch below the head. I am pretty sure that they broke due to the stress put on them by the wooden frame of the door rotting at the bottom. (and the loss of strength due to a bit of rusting) The lower section and the handle side of the door were pretty weak from getting old and rotten.
I took the outside aluminum frame completely off and peeled the outside and inside skin back to reveal the rot. A bit of prying broke the rotten parts away from the good. I cleaned everything as well as I could and bought some similar sized wooden parts and planed them down to be as close to the original as I could. Using a really expensive multi purpose glue I reassembled the skins on the frame and screwed the aluminum frame back. Before assembly I made sure that I needed a "square" door and made it to fit the opening on the trailer.
It worked.
To insure a few more years from the repair I increased the support screws on the hinge side from 4 to 9. I also used rust resistant screw. I am sure the extra support will help.

It works so much better.
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Old 08-25-2007, 04:27 PM   #7
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I have taken the door apart. There is a couple of factors contributing to the sagging door. The straw that broke the camels back appears to be the four screws that hold the aluminum frame to the internal wooden frame of the door on the hinge side of the door. These were all broken off about 1/4 inch below the head. I am pretty sure that they broke due to the stress put on them by the wooden frame of the door rotting at the bottom. (and the loss of strength due to a bit of rusting) The lower section and the handle side of the door were pretty weak from getting old and rotten.
I took the outside aluminum frame completely off and peeled the outside and inside skin back to reveal the rot. A bit of prying broke the rotten parts away from the good. I cleaned everything as well as I could and bought some similar sized wooden parts and planed them down to be as close to the original as I could. Using a really expensive multi purpose glue I reassembled the skins on the frame and screwed the aluminum frame back. Before assembly I made sure that I needed a "square" door and made it to fit the opening on the trailer.
It worked.
To insure a few more years from the repair I increased the support screws on the hinge side from 4 to 9. I also used rust resistant screw. I am sure the extra support will help.

It works so much better.
OK Donna & Chris
HOW does the door actually come off?
I see a vertical row of screws on the inside of the trailer, on the hinge side. Do you just remove those? Then what?
I don't see any screws on the outside, nor any other types of obvious fastening.
My door doesn't seem to have any real play up and down, but does stick at the bottom when closing. I have to use my knee outside, or lift from the inside to close it all the way. Is there a way of 'adjusting' it, IF the frame isn't really rotted out?
I'm reluctant to start dis-assembling, until I have an idea what I could get into. It does look like, whatever I start to remove will require caulking and fiddling to refit to reassemble.
Should I leave it alone?
Thanks,
Mike.....>
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Old 08-26-2007, 09:13 PM   #8
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Hello Mike

Nice to hear from someone so near. We were camping at Awenda last month. Our door was a little sticky and then just seemed to get way worse all of the sudden so it does not seem to me that you should leave it. From your description you are about to have the same problem as we did.

The screws you are refering to are hoding the hanging frame in place. I suspect that they actually cover a system that locks the frame to the trailer but I can't say for sure because I have not removed it yet. Mostly I think that if you do it is a big can of worms.

What I took apart was only the door.
My door has four butts or hinges screwed to the aluminum frame of the door only with three screws in each butt. I needed a stuby phillips screwdriver to remove these screws and then I worked on the door on the flat.
The aluminum frame that I refered to is actually the outer edgeing of the door. It is formed like channels. This channels are screwed in each corner with two machine screws (about #6x3/4") that you must remove and them slip the channels off the edges. The screws that really hold the whole thing square are on the edges of the frame. They are wood screws, that is what I found broken on the hinge side of my door.
After removing the old screws and replacing the rotted wood I made sure that the door was square and replaced all the screws on the edges.
I struggle with being understood so if you are not following me then we could plan to meet somewhere or chat on the phone.
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Old 08-27-2007, 09:15 AM   #9
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Hello Mike

Nice to hear from someone so near. We were camping at Awenda last month. Our door was a little sticky and then just seemed to get way worse all of the sudden so it does not seem to me that you should leave it. From your description you are about to have the same problem as we did.

The screws you are refering to are hoding the hanging frame in place. I suspect that they actually cover a system that locks the frame to the trailer but I can't say for sure because I have not removed it yet. Mostly I think that if you do it is a big can of worms.

What I took apart was only the door.
My door has four butts or hinges screwed to the aluminum frame of the door only with three screws in each butt. I needed a stuby phillips screwdriver to remove these screws and then I worked on the door on the flat.
The aluminum frame that I refered to is actually the outer edgeing of the door. It is formed like channels. This channels are screwed in each corner with two machine screws (about #6x3/4") that you must remove and them slip the channels off the edges. The screws that really hold the whole thing square are on the edges of the frame. They are wood screws, that is what I found broken on the hinge side of my door.
After removing the old screws and replacing the rotted wood I made sure that the door was square and replaced all the screws on the edges.
I struggle with being understood so if you are not following me then we could plan to meet somewhere or chat on the phone.
AHA! Now I understand! I was confusing the Frame, with the Door! Removing the frame IS a whole different game.
OK, I can now see what's needed I'll get a stubby Phillips and see what happens, when I get a chance. I see that the rubber door bumper has to come off also to remove the channel. I don't see any gaps, nor movement in the channel ends, nor along the door, but, maybe, I can snug up the upper part of the door hinges and 'pull' it up enough to stop the sag. I'll try that first before more radical surgery!

Awenda Park is about 10 km from me but we haven't been there for Camping for a long time. I prefer Kilbear and Powassan area and further North.
Thanks for the detailed info.
Mike.....>
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