propane installation survey questions - Fiberglass RV


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Old 08-03-2017, 11:40 AM   #1
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Name: K C
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propane installation survey questions

I am working on renovating my circa 1970 Campster. The original propane installation comes up through the floor in the kitchen area. That meant the propane line ran underneath the trailer for more than a 6 foot distance. I am not sure that is a great idea to have a soft copper tube or a rubber hose run exposed for that long a distance underneath a trailer without protection. A previous owner had cut the propane line off underneath the trailer just before it entered so I will need to put in a brand new line and this is a good time for me to establish the location of entry. I have a gas line fitting for it on hand.

On the newer trailers where does your propane line enter into the shell? Photos are useful if you don't mind taking the time. I of course realize I also have the option of bringing it through the front wall but I don't know if that is a typical option on the FGRVs.

PS: I am not afraid of propane or installing it. I have the skills needed to do such things. I am just after the information of the typical general area of location for propane line entry into the trailer. I don't have any other travel trailers around to look at for examples. The RV dealers in Seattle are way north or way south of my location. Thousands of boats near me but no travel trailers
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Old 08-03-2017, 12:17 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by k corbin View Post
I am working on renovating my circa 1970 Campster. The original propane installation comes up through the floor in the kitchen area. That meant the propane line ran underneath the trailer for more than a 6 foot distance. I am not sure that is a great idea to have a soft copper tube or a rubber hose run exposed for that long a distance underneath a trailer without protection. A previous owner had cut the propane line off underneath the trailer just before it entered so I will need to put in a brand new line and this is a good time for me to establish the location of entry. I have a gas line fitting for it on hand.

On the newer trailers where does your propane line enter into the shell? Photos are useful if you don't mind taking the time. I of course realize I also have the option of bringing it through the front wall but I don't know if that is a typical option on the FGRVs.

PS: I am not afraid of propane or installing it. I have the skills needed to do such things. I am just after the information of the typical general area of location for propane line entry into the trailer. I don't have any other travel trailers around to look at for examples. The RV dealers in Seattle are way north or way south of my location. Thousands of boats near me but no travel trailers
Boat shops are great for working on fiberglass trailers. It's best to have any work done by a boat shop done in the fall and winter.

As for propane entry, my Scamp has the propane entering the trailer on the front above the floor on the driver's side and the copper tubing runs along the bottom corner under the cabinets. This works pretty good for Scamp 13' since all the propane appliances are in that area.

One could consult with a propane expert to figure the best way to shield the under trailer line. Some thoughts include metal conduit like electricians use, PVC often used. However I've not seen rock damage done to the underside of my Scamp, So maybe the black water pipe used in home gas runs would work just fine.
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Old 08-03-2017, 12:28 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by Byron Kinnaman View Post
Boat shops are great for working on fiberglass trailers. It's best to have any work done by a boat shop done in the fall and winter.

As for propane entry, my Scamp has the propane entering the trailer on the front above the floor on the driver's side and the copper tubing runs along the bottom corner under the cabinets. This works pretty good for Scamp 13' since all the propane appliances are in that area.

One could consult with a propane expert to figure the best way to shield the under trailer line. Some thoughts include metal conduit like electricians use, PVC often used. However I've not seen rock damage done to the underside of my Scamp, So maybe the black water pipe used in home gas runs would work just fine.
Thanks, I was thinking the front would be the most convenient entry point. I was hoping that was going to be the response.

As to using steel conduit to protect copper tubing...that would be a very bad idea as the two metals are not compatible. Black piping would rust out especially if it went over roads with salt.

As stated I don't need help doing the work as I have the skills required for it
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Old 08-03-2017, 12:58 PM   #4
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All the LP lines on every RV I've had ran under the unit and close to the frame rail. Gas/fuel lines were attached to the frame rail for 25-30'. Never any problems with either lines from road use.
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Old 08-03-2017, 01:00 PM   #5
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Name: Jack L
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Bigfoot used a transparent plastic hose over the copper tube and routed everything possible in close to the frame to offer some additional protection. If I was redoing the propane lines, I would use flexible plastic electrician's conduit instead. It is available in home centers.
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Old 08-03-2017, 01:06 PM   #6
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If your frame is c channel you could run the new line inside of the channel to protect it from any possible damage from road debris while in tow...if it is a square tubing type frame you could run it inside the tubing but it might be a challenge in fishing it through the frame tubing...
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Old 08-03-2017, 01:58 PM   #7
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T

As stated I don't need help doing the work as I have the skills required for it
That may the case, but you if have to ask questions here it indicates to me that it might be a good idea to do a little professional consulting.
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Old 08-03-2017, 02:12 PM   #8
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As above Scamp ran it inside the trailer to the back of the fridge and then up to the stove. I would rather have it under the trailer and brought it up into a different location. I believe if your going to have a leak you want it outside so keep as much of the pipe and its joints as you can outside. Back when my 1986 trailer was made there was no for-thought as to how the tubing was run and maintenance to the fridge burner. I curse that pipe every time I have to deal with the back side of the fridge. Keep the tube attached to the floor with insulated clips next to but not attached to the frame. Copper on wood would fair better than copper on steel. The code requires that all fittings be accessible and not concealed. You need a couple of wrenches 2 swing in a very small space. When I did some work on my propane system I found a sticky oily substance inside the line so it is wise to have the propane lines run up to an appliance rather that split over and run the line down to an appliance. That way no debris flows down to your appliance. My lines were over 25 years old when I opened up the system so who knows how long that stuff was building up in there. I was surprised to find propane gas was not clean.
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Old 08-03-2017, 05:38 PM   #9
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It's been quite some time since I worked for a fuel oil and propane supplier, so things have changed. Where we used 3/8 or 1/2" bare soft copper, I believe now there is copper line that has a covering on it. Most trailers I've been under just had bare copper run in a haphazard way, whatever was quick and easy. I would enter the trailer up through the floor as close to the appliance as possible. If more than one appliance, stove, furnace, fridge, then "T" the line under the trailer. One of our trailers is a Uhaul, and they used iron pipe under the trailer, which they converted to from copper that was originally installed on the early models
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Old 08-04-2017, 08:49 AM   #10
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In my Fiber Stream, the main line runs along the centerline of the trailer, and is 3/4" iron pipe. There are takeoffs along it for the water heater, furnace, refrigerator and stove, consisting of 3/8" copper tubing. I have encased this copper tubing in split 1/2" garden hose up into the trailer body to protect it from rocks. The entry points to the trailer body are sealed to prevent critter entry. All good so far, after 13 years.


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Old 08-04-2017, 09:53 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by Victor Benz View Post
In my Fiber Stream, the main line runs along the centerline of the trailer, and is 3/4" iron pipe. There are takeoffs along it for the water heater, furnace, refrigerator and stove, consisting of 3/8" copper tubing. I have encased this copper tubing in split 1/2" garden hose up into the trailer body to protect it from rocks. The entry points to the trailer body are sealed to prevent critter entry. All good so far, after 13 years.


Vic
The garden hose cover seems like a sensible solution that anyone could add to protect their copper gas lines that run underneath. Much sturdier than the split loom covers for wiring.
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Old 08-04-2017, 10:51 PM   #12
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Name: Jann
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Originally Posted by k corbin View Post
I am working on renovating my circa 1970 Campster. The original propane installation comes up through the floor in the kitchen area. That meant the propane line ran underneath the trailer for more than a 6 foot distance. I am not sure that is a great idea to have a soft copper tube or a rubber hose run exposed for that long a distance underneath a trailer without protection. A previous owner had cut the propane line off underneath the trailer just before it entered so I will need to put in a brand new line and this is a good time for me to establish the location of entry. I have a gas line fitting for it on hand.

On the newer trailers where does your propane line enter into the shell? Photos are useful if you don't mind taking the time. I of course realize I also have the option of bringing it through the front wall but I don't know if that is a typical option on the FGRVs.

PS: I am not afraid of propane or installing it. I have the skills needed to do such things. I am just after the information of the typical general area of location for propane line entry into the trailer. I don't have any other travel trailers around to look at for examples. The RV dealers in Seattle are way north or way south of my location. Thousands of boats near me but no travel trailers
Not sure where our propane comes in in our Casita but in our motorhome it is black steel pipe outside and turns into copper inside. Maybe that is the way to go on your trailer.
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Old 08-04-2017, 11:01 PM   #13
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If steel and copper are not compatible, how is the transition from one to the other made?
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Old 08-04-2017, 11:28 PM   #14
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Use a brass fitting between the copper and the steel. That is how they make the transition in plumbing
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