Tie down bolts and frame - old Trillium - Fiberglass RV


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 09-02-2015, 04:17 PM   #1
Senior Member
 
Name: Randy J.
Trailer: Trillium
Ontario
Posts: 152
Tie down bolts and frame - old Trillium

This probably isn't new - except to me. While doing some sprucing up of the cargo holds on the old Trill I noticed one of the tie-down bolt heads and square metal "washer", nearest the freshwater tank drain, looked severely rusted. A little pry with my screwdriver and the head popped right off! This is the only one I've seen to be rusted but I'll apply some torque to the rest, just to be sure and replace this one and probably oversize the steel plate/washer. The floor around the area seems solid. I had already added an extension to the drain spigot.

Questions for Trillium owners:

Has anyone had similar experience?
Think I should just replace the rest of the tie-downs?
Are there any torque specs?
The floor seems solid, as does the frame. I nonetheless have the frame treated by Crown every few years. And it doesn't seem that these fail, at least on old Trilliums. Anyone heard anything different?


Randy
__________________

Randy J. is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-02-2015, 06:01 PM   #2
Senior Member
 
David Tilston's Avatar
 
Name: Dave W
Trailer: Trillium 4500 - 1977, 1978 (2), 1300 - 1977, 1973, and a 1972
Alberta
Posts: 5,849
Registry
Randy, The bolts are a week point on Trilliums. You don't say if yours is a 1300, or 4500. On the 1300, there are six bolts. On a 4500, there are eight.

I would replace them all.
__________________

David Tilston is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2015, 06:21 AM   #3
Senior Member
 
Name: Randy J.
Trailer: Trillium
Ontario
Posts: 152
Tie down bolts

Good advice! Mine's a 1300 - six bolts. Curiously they put four in the back, two on each side but only two in the front.

Any idea of the specs? I'm thinking of using stainless, if I can find it, and of course lock washers. And probably a hex head rather than the carriage bolt. Carriage is lower profile but the steel plate was just round-drilled - no idea how they got the bolt to hold still while they torqued the nut. This way I can just drill the new plate.

Randy
Randy J. is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2015, 08:20 AM   #4
Senior Member
 
Larry C Hanson's Avatar
 
Name: Larry H
Trailer: Trillium
Arizona
Posts: 332
Bolts

Hello,

Ran into a similar problem when I bought
my '78 Trill...

Trillium Body Mounting Bolts

Take Care,
Larry H
Larry C Hanson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2015, 08:34 AM   #5
Senior Member
 
David Tilston's Avatar
 
Name: Dave W
Trailer: Trillium 4500 - 1977, 1978 (2), 1300 - 1977, 1973, and a 1972
Alberta
Posts: 5,849
Registry
Quote:
Originally Posted by Randy J. View Post
Good advice! Mine's a 1300 - six bolts. Curiously they put four in the back, two on each side but only two in the front.

Any idea of the specs? I'm thinking of using stainless, if I can find it, and of course lock washers. And probably a hex head rather than the carriage bolt. Carriage is lower profile but the steel plate was just round-drilled - no idea how they got the bolt to hold still while they torqued the nut. This way I can just drill the new plate.

Randy
When I had my trailer fixed up, I had them put the bolts in upside down. That way the nuts and threads are inside the trailer. The porta-potty still fits over the nuts in the porta-potty garage, under the gaucho.

Torquing the nuts is easy, if you use an impact wrench.
David Tilston is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2015, 09:45 AM   #6
Senior Member
 
floyd's Avatar
 
Name: Floyd
Trailer: 2004 13 ft Scamp Custom Deluxe
IllAnnoy
Posts: 7,234
Registry
My Trillium 1300 had corroded bolts so bad that you could lift the body off the frame at the corners. Not one bolt survived removal.I used stainless bolts, nuts and washers for replacements with great confidence. You really don't need a torque wrench, just compress the lock washer until it is flat. You can use threadlocker if you have it or you could spray the exposed threads with undercoat or paint as a touch of added security.
floyd is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2015, 01:23 PM   #7
Senior Member
 
Name: Duane
Trailer: 1976 Trillium 1300
New Brunswick
Posts: 135
To prevent rusting of any bolt & nut use a setting seal wax ring for toilets and smear it on. It is bee's wax. You will be glad you did when it's time to remove any bolts later on.
getaway1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2015, 01:57 PM   #8
Senior Member
 
Name: bob
Trailer: 1984 u-haul ct13; 1996 Casita 17 Spirit Deluxe; 1946 Modernistic teardrop
New York
Posts: 4,868
UHauls typically have rust issues with the body bolts. They are 1/4" elevator bolts and rust away where they pass through the floor so the problem can't be seen until they are removed
mary and bob is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2015, 02:14 PM   #9
Senior Member
 
Name: Randy J.
Trailer: Trillium
Ontario
Posts: 152
Tie down bolts

Well, thanks for all the advice. The tie-downs I discover require three things to keep the trailer secure - the bolt, the metal plate or washer, and a sound plywood floor in between. So another point of concern is how sound the the 40 year old plywood might be under that fiberglass. It seems solid but having replaced the rotten window frames I'm leery. I'll at least give it a screw test. And even so, I'm thinking of adding an extra thickness of plywood, then putting the bolts through everything.
If I wanted to have someone else do this, would the RV place be where to go or is there somewhere that deals specifically with trailers?

Randy
Randy J. is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2015, 03:23 PM   #10
Senior Member
 
David Tilston's Avatar
 
Name: Dave W
Trailer: Trillium 4500 - 1977, 1978 (2), 1300 - 1977, 1973, and a 1972
Alberta
Posts: 5,849
Registry
Randy, I am not sure what you mean about the plywood under the fibreglass. Where the bolts go through should be exposed wood, but with some resin painted on it.
David Tilston is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2015, 04:32 PM   #11
Senior Member
 
Name: Randy J.
Trailer: Trillium
Ontario
Posts: 152
Well yes, I suppose that it is just resin on the topside of the plywood - a very thick layer of resin which we hope has kept the wood dry and sound all these years.
Randy J. is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2015, 04:34 PM   #12
Senior Member
 
Name: Randy J.
Trailer: Trillium
Ontario
Posts: 152
Come to think of it though, the fact that it is just a coat of resin and seems sound probably tells me the wood it coats is okay. Right?
Randy J. is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2015, 04:58 PM   #13
Senior Member
 
David Tilston's Avatar
 
Name: Dave W
Trailer: Trillium 4500 - 1977, 1978 (2), 1300 - 1977, 1973, and a 1972
Alberta
Posts: 5,849
Registry
That would be my guess.
David Tilston is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2015, 06:50 PM   #14
Senior Member
 
Name: Randy
Trailer: 1980Trillium 1300
Ontario
Posts: 373
Here are your trailer bolts, same like mine. Just cut them off, replace with new one. Even the new bolts are regular steel, you will have a peace of mind in the next...20 years..
Boler 13' frame removal in progress
Thinh is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-05-2015, 06:38 AM   #15
Senior Member
 
Name: Don
Trailer: Trillium
Ontario
Posts: 171
I just had my Trillium off the frame. All my bolts were rusted and two were almost rusted through. Replaced them with stainless steel. Bolt, washer, lock washer and nut. Well worth it.
Now here is my problem. The tray that the porta potty sits on. How is it attached? my final bolt to replace sits under it and It can't get at it. Anyone removed this "shelf/tray" before?
Don ravinerat is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-07-2015, 06:21 PM   #16
Senior Member
 
Name: Randy J.
Trailer: Trillium
Ontario
Posts: 152
I will use regular steel bolts, partly because I don't want to set up a possible galvanic situation with the frame and partly because, as Tom from Trillium Parts tactfully suggested, I don't need them to last another 40 years!

Why are you removing the body from the frame? Are you concerned about frame rust? So far as the floor goes, shouldn't the fiberglass shell be protecting the wood floor? In an ambitious moment I have thought about separating the frame and having it painted. But Krown Rust proofing seems to seep everywhere and I'm pretty sure it must have gotten between the tube frame and the body. Anyway, any pictures of how the heck you do it would be interesting!

Someone was asking how to remove toe porta-poti garage. I've long since removed ours because it stunk to high heaven - no bolts, just some screws - and have no plans to replace it. We carry Old Stinky (when we must!) in a sealable tote.

Randy
Randy J. is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-08-2015, 05:59 AM   #17
Senior Member
 
Name: Don
Trailer: Trillium
Ontario
Posts: 171
I replaced my bolts with SS on the recommendation of the trailer place. Anything I do to the trailer will last the length of time I own it for sure.

We removed the body from the frame so not to damage the Fiberglass when welding the new axle on. I got to have a good look at the frame and it is solid. I will be able to remove the body for painting of either the frame or the body when the time comes. I was thinking on using the bed liner stuff for the frame but I will look into that later.

I got the little shelf out and it was held in by 4 little screws. I've just got it sitting in there right now. I'll have to see if it bounces too much
Don ravinerat is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-10-2015, 02:44 PM   #18
Junior Member
 
Name: Steve
Trailer: Trillium 1300 (1980)
Ontario
Posts: 13
Registry
Bolt specs

First off, ours is a 1980 Trillium 1300. That means that the frame is different from many of the earlier years; there are gussets welded to the "upcurve" right under the forward edge of the body to prevent the cracking often seen in earlier frames. Also, and I'm not sure if this is just on the later models or not, the forward two body-to-frame carriage bolts are not through the frame like the four in the back, but rather through a heavy steel angle bracket welded to the side of the frame when it was built.

So bearing in mind that other versions of the trailer may be different, here are the specs of the bolts I removed:

4 at rear: 5/16" mild steel carriage bolts 5" long, 18tpi, with square-punched backer plate on top and split washer and 1/2" nut on bottom.

2 at front: 3/8" mild steel carriage bolts 2 1/2" long, 16tpi, with square-punched backer plate on top and split washer and 9/16" nut on bottom.

Of the six, 3 were very badly corroded and reduced to a fraction of their original diameter, in all cases near the head where the damage was not visible. Likely this is due to exposure to wet plywood in the floor sandwich brought on by leaky window seals (fixed).

In other parts of this thread one user noted that his backer plates were round-drilled. In my case all six were machine punched with a square hole that matches the carriage bolt sub-head. This makes nut tightening down below easy: no spin up above. Maybe the square holes are on the newer Trills?

One user mentions installing the bolts with the nuts and washers on the top. I chose not to do this. My concern? I have seen split washers snap in the past. It's not common, but it happens. When it does, there is a danger of having the nut come loose. (At least until it is rust-seized ).

If this happens in the original configuration, the bolt will probably stay put. If things are upside down from the original, and the nut "walks" off from a failed washer and vibration, the carriage bolt or hex bolt will fall out on the road. Remember that the load on these bolts is almost always "in shear", meaning they act to stop the body from sliding on the frame. I figure a bolt in the hole is worth a hundred on the road.

I ended up replacing mine in exactly the same configuration the manufacturer used, and I used the same type of mild steel carriage bolts. I did use some high-end caulk under the backer plate and around the bolt shafts where they went through the floor. On the rest of the bolt, I applied a generous coating of bearing grease.

My plan is to remove the body and clean and paint the frame next year. When I do, I may reattach using stainless. If I don't get to it, well, I'm pretty sure these will last longer than I will.

As other users have said: if you haven't done this yet, there's still time before the snow flies. It took less than a day.
Attached Thumbnails
01 carriage bolts removed.jpg   02 square-punched backer plate.jpg  

pogophile is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-10-2015, 03:45 PM   #19
Senior Member
 
Name: Don
Trailer: Trillium
Ontario
Posts: 171
All 6 of mine are 5/16 x 5" with a square hole punched backer plate. Washer, loc washer and nut. 1974 Trillium.
Don ravinerat is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-10-2015, 04:19 PM   #20
Senior Member
 
Name: Randy J.
Trailer: Trillium
Ontario
Posts: 152
Well, thank you all - for all of that! Tom of Trillium Parts (some of you may know him - the original Trillium guy!) suggested just using the same size steel bolts from Home Depot. I haven't pulled the other bolts yet but suspect some of you are right about the "square punched" square washers. The washer that broke off with the carriage bolt head is too corroded to see for sure and can't be re-used. Don't know where I would get a replacement square punched, unless I somehow do it so at least that one will have to be a hex head (maybe my wife will consent to hold the wrench on the top side I'll ask the hardware store to at match the specs of the bolts I buy to the ones I take out.

Glad to hear the fellow who removed the body found the frame in good shape - also reassuring for the rest of us.

Randy
__________________

Randy J. is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
trillium


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Awning Tie Down Straps? iplumb General Chat 11 08-15-2013 12:02 PM
Loose frame bolts and deterioration of floor. Ak Ron Problem Solving | Owners Helping Owners 35 06-07-2013 03:52 AM
How do you tie things down inside the camper lpk49 Modifications, Alterations and Updates 40 05-25-2013 11:00 PM
A Home Brew Tie Down System for the Pickup Raz Problem Solving | Owners Helping Owners 6 04-25-2013 07:50 AM
Floor to frame bolts Tom U Problem Solving | Owners Helping Owners 0 05-10-2009 02:02 PM

» Upcoming Events
No events scheduled in
the next 465 days.
» Featured Campgrounds

Reviews provided by


Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 02:21 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.11
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions Inc.
×