Train wrecks? - Fiberglass RV


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Old 06-14-2011, 08:27 PM   #1
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Angry Train wrecks?

Hello folks!...so we are new to fiberglass and just moved up to a 16' Scamp after outgrowing our 67 Serro Scotty. Anyway, I have taken my camper on the road 3 times recently and when I get to where I am going and open the door it's like a damn train wreck in my camper. Cushions everywhere, curtain rods off, side dinette on the floor, cooler tipped over, etc. Basically anything that is not screwed down is fair game in this thing. I don't get it. I'm not new to camping and know how to secure my things but this is crazy!..Is this common in these campers? My plan was to try this and purchase a new one at some point if I like the 98 i bought but this is a real downer. Thanks for any advice you can give me.
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Old 06-14-2011, 08:33 PM   #2
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my goodness, marco, this is NOT normal...at least not in my experience!!! of course, i have zero idea how you drive---if you are erratic, braking quickly, shotgun starts and stops, then this all makes sense. however, if you aren't that kind of driver, then something is sure up!
wish i could offer more concrete advice, but since you say that you know how to secure your things inside, i've got nothing to add. good luck!
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Old 06-14-2011, 08:42 PM   #3
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Suspension shot maybe?
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Old 06-14-2011, 08:43 PM   #4
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I'd say slow down.
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Old 06-14-2011, 08:50 PM   #5
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i should have mentioned... its not the driving. i drive with my 2 kids and always drive slow and carefully, especially when towing because i dont have trailer brakes. i also tow with a very smooth newer volvo suv, so i just dont get it...??? thanks for the comments so far, any ideas are appreciated.
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Old 06-14-2011, 08:53 PM   #6
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Hmmm, I wonder if brakes may help? Also check you wheels for balancing. Age of suspension, do you have any type of sway control? What is your tongue weight? All of these variables can help resolve your issue.
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Old 06-14-2011, 09:05 PM   #7
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Does your trailer have car tires on it? I'm no expert but I'd be looking at the tires and the already mentioned suspension.
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Old 06-14-2011, 09:18 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by melissab View Post
Suspension shot maybe?
If you are towing in the 50 - 60 mph range and your accelerating, braking and lane changes are g-r-a-d-u-a-l, then I would also suspect a bad torsion axle.
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Old 06-14-2011, 09:20 PM   #9
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Mine was less of a mess after I bought new tires and had them balanced. Seemed to have smoothed out the trailers ride a lot.

John
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Old 06-14-2011, 09:21 PM   #10
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A 16 footer and without trailer brakes? Okay, but look to seeing your tug brakes wearing out faster. And, your profile doesn't have a location. Is it possible you need brakes to be legal?

I'm kinda, sorta doubting a 1998 torsion axle is worn out, but I suppose it's possible. Do you have a fist bump between the top of the tire and the wheel well? Do you have 12-15% tongue weight? Heavy items, like the cooler should be packed right over the axle. hummmmm
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Old 06-14-2011, 09:25 PM   #11
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What tires do you have? A lot of folks pump the tires up to the max sidewall pressure, but tire manufacturers and trailer manufacturers may have other recommendations based on the weight that is actually on each tire. For instance, in my 13 foot Scamp,the max sidewall pressure is 55 PSI (I'm pretty sure), but Michelin and Scamp both recommend 15 PSI, because the Scamp is WAY lighter than the tires are rated for. At full pressure, the trailer would bounce a lot more, which will toss your stuff around, and is bad for the frame and coupler.
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Old 06-14-2011, 10:01 PM   #12
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geezzz not normal in mine either when on paved roads - occasional cushion will slip a little if I have had to do a fast unplanned stop. Curtain rods would sometimes come off before I stopped that by putting twist ties on them. You can adjust the door latches so they hold a bit tighter as well.

The only time I have seen my trailer look like a train crash happen inside was after my partner took it on a boys only trip to the back country on rough curvey roads and I know speed was involved. If as you say it is not your driving I have to guess that as the others suggest there is something not right with your tires &/or suspension. The only other thing I can think of is that the tongue weight is to low or its sitting too high on the hitch. Is the front end of the trailer up or down on the hitch? If its up you might want to put a drop bar on the hitch to level it out - that may help a bit.

Which volvo X are you towing with? I was under the impression that all the X's had fairly low tow limits if no brakes on the trailer. My 16' weighs in at about 2500lbs when not carrying water.
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Old 06-15-2011, 01:02 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by mcbrew View Post
What tires do you have? A lot of folks pump the tires up to the max sidewall pressure, but tire manufacturers and trailer manufacturers may have other recommendations based on the weight that is actually on each tire. For instance, in my 13 foot Scamp,the max sidewall pressure is 55 PSI (I'm pretty sure), but Michelin and Scamp both recommend 15 PSI, because the Scamp is WAY lighter than the tires are rated for. At full pressure, the trailer would bounce a lot more, which will toss your stuff around, and is bad for the frame and coupler.
Mcbrew
Might I suggest you call Scamp and ask what tire pressure they recommend for your trailer. 15psi is way way too low. Most trailer tire manufactures won't recommend maximum "cold" pressure as printed on the sidewall.
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Old 06-15-2011, 01:13 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by marco View Post
Hello folks!...so we are new to fiberglass and just moved up to a 16' Scamp after outgrowing our 67 Serro Scotty. Anyway, I have taken my camper on the road 3 times recently and when I get to where I am going and open the door it's like a damn train wreck in my camper. Cushions everywhere, curtain rods off, side dinette on the floor, cooler tipped over, etc. Basically anything that is not screwed down is fair game in this thing. I don't get it. I'm not new to camping and know how to secure my things but this is crazy!..Is this common in these campers? My plan was to try this and purchase a new one at some point if I like the 98 i bought but this is a real downer. Thanks for any advice you can give me.
Several things come to mind. Not driving smoothly for one, torsion axles worn out, tires too soft and bouncing, automobile tires with soft side walls which increase bounce, overloading the trailer, loading trailer in such a manner to reduce tongue weight, just to name a few.
I pull a 13' with brakes, no coolers or other heavy items behind the axle except the water tank which is usually full. When I drive on the rough concrete road in some states the cushion will sometimes be on the floor. Curtain rods used to come off really easy until I pinched the tops of the holders to keep them in. When the cushions fall down I just put them back.
I just completed a 600 mile round trip weekend everything stayed put. Maximum trailer speed was 58mph. When getting into rough road I slow down.
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