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Old 03-23-2007, 10:06 AM   #1
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Hello! I am new here! We are getting our trailer replaced due to major manufacturer defects. They are essentially giving us a brand-new trailer that is an exact replica to our old one, except the new one is made out of fiberglass (old aluminum). Our trailer will be parked permanently at a campsite. What are the pros/cons of fiberglass over aluminum? Which one is better in our situation, i.e. we will not be towing it anywhere.
Thanks in abvance!
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Old 03-23-2007, 10:38 AM   #2
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Assuming the structure is the same (panels attached to a stick-built frame), I can't see much difference one way or the other. I suppose FG panels might do a bit better in a hailstorm.
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Old 03-23-2007, 04:37 PM   #3
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Hi Donna; What brand of fiberglass?

I think both are good trailers; light and easy to tow. Aluminum is actually quite a reactive metal and depending on what it is in contact with, can oxidize (eg. iron rust) quite rapidly. Fiberglass takes years to break down (we live on the coast and many times some of the old fiberglass boats would go away... they seem to go on forever).

A lot will depend on how the fiberglass trailer was made. Water is the main problem no matter what type of trailer. More seams/holes the more probable the leak. Seems to be quite a waste to simply park a trailer since they are designed to permit moving from place to place fairly easily.

In any case, a well made fiberglass trailer is going to last a long-long time.
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Old 03-23-2007, 05:12 PM   #4
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Welcome Donna.

Donna reports that their trailer is a Pilgrim Lite.

This would be a Fiberglass panel siding over an aluminum (wall) frame, and probably a rubber membrane roof, with a conventional (hard panel) interior.

Most of the members here have molded (frame-less) fiberglass walls and roof, with soft insulation and fabric or carpet (think upholstered) interior.

Quote:
We are getting our trailer replaced due to major manufacturer defects. [b]They are essentially giving us a brand-new trailer...
I fear that like Jack expressed, your new trailer will be more similar to, than different from your old one. Was your old one also parked permenantly at a campsite?
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Old 03-23-2007, 05:48 PM   #5
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Quote:
Aluminum is actually quite a reactive metal and depending on what it is in contact with, can oxidize (eg. iron rust) quite rapidly. Fiberglass takes years to break down (we live on the coast and many times some of the old fiberglass boats would go away... they seem to go on forever).
There's a big difference between aluminum oxide and iron oxide -- As the iron oxidizes, it creates gaps, allowing moisture/oxygen penetration and more oxidation; as a general rule, when the aluminum oxidizes, it swells and seals the surface from further oxidation, therefore it's counterproductive to shine up an aluminum surface by removing the oxidation. Aluminum is subject to galvanic corrosion if there are dissimilar metals in contact and a direct electrical current is present (the 12VDC is the potential {hmm, a pun!} enemy here, not the 120VAC). OTOH, fiberglass is galvanically inert.

Aluminum should need far less protection from the sun, whereas fiberglass can be damaged by the sun's UV rays.

Frankly, I would expect either material to give long service -- There are plenty of both fiberglass and aluminum trailers still in service in the RV world -- They both score very high compared to stick-built wood frame trailers with seams...
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