This thread will document my journey through remodelling a 1976 Trillium
I picked up this trailer on Labour Day for what I believe is a decent price. It first came to my attention listed as a referral by David Tilston. It was listed for $1,500.
Ab (Canada) - 1974? - Trillium 1300 - $1500
It seemed like such a smoking deal. I was not certain what I would do with it, but I knew I could likely do next to nothing, bring it back home, and double my money easily. I emailed the seller about it right away. He was located near Sundre, a small town just over an hour northwest of Calgary. This was on a Wednesday, and I was going to be right by there at our rec property camping that weekend. I set it up to see him on Friday around suppertime. H did say he had one other person coming before me. Just as I got to Sundre as was refueling, he sent me a message saying it had this other party was taking it
.Oh well, you snooze you lose.
I just went to our property and set up our trailer. The next day, I needed to make a phone call, and as I have no phone reception at our land, I took a short drive up the road from the river to do so. Once I got reception, I found I had gotten an email and voice message from the seller. The first buyer had backed out, and he had already pulled the ad. He told me it was mine if I wanted. I went over the next morning with my brother to look at it, only 15 minutes from our land.
I knew from the ad photos that there would be lots of work that would be needed to be done, but found a few more issues with it than I had hoped for. There was a bit of a sag in the roof, a door out of adjustment, and a few other small things. Heck, it was nearly 40 years old, so expected it would need some work. But still, for the price it was not too bad. I offered $1,000 because of the additional issues found, the offer was accepted, and ended up as the new owner.
I was now the owner of a 1976 Trillium
1300, with no clue what I was going to do with it. My first thoughts were to eitherclean it up a bit, then either resell it, or use it as a guest room at our land. Then I got to thinking, I have a daughter getting married next May 02, and thought maybe fixed up it could be a wedding present for her. So I let her know about it, and made her the offer, as I did not want to go ahead with the work to risk her not wanting it. She was very happy to accept seeing I was paying for the remodel work, and said she was happy to put some sweat equity into it, and there will be lots of that needed.
For some silly reason, at this point I figured it would take about $2,000 or so to get it up to snuff. This was before I started to do up a detailed list of what I would minimally want to do to it for her. I initially came up with a budget of around $3,000 (and 150 man hours), and know that there will be more things found to do as we go.
Here are some photos from when I picked it up.
This is parked out at our land, where it stayed for a while.
You can see in this photo, how the right side (from our view), sags in about 1' in from the side.
You can see here where the previous owner started wiping all the moldy residue off. All the service hatches are brittle, and need replacing, as are all the lights
The rear has had a tire mount and bike rake welded and bolted on to the bumper. It is actually very solid.
The interior is actually very filthy, especially in storage areas, like under the seats and on the shelves. But basically, very usable.
It was a wee bit snowy when we when to pick it up in November 9th .
The minimal list of things to do is:
Fix the roof The roof had sagged down about an inch along one side, likely due to snow loads, as the trailer was never parked inside. The last 10+ years it just sat as a guest house by the second owner. I will need to put a support in from the countertop to the upper cupboards to raise the roof at that point nearly an inch.
I will completely strip off everything electrical
, and start over. This include the wiring from the tow right through to the lights
, redo all the 12V wiring (though I may keep the original lights
and put LEDs in), and replace the 120V light
over the sink with some LED ones. I will add a porch light
. I will redo all the 120V AC wiring, which will just be a couple plugs, and the fridge
. I may add a plug outside. I will also add a battery
, as there isnt one now. I will likely get a small portable solar panel
, and a good trickle charger instead of a converter. All the marker lights and tail/turn lights will be replaced.
Redo right from a new bottle and regulator, to the lines for the stove, heater and fridge
I will remove all the windows
. I will likely reuse all of them, though contemplating a new fixed unit for the front, mostly to seal better when towing. I will dismantle all the frames completely, replace a couple broken panes, polish the aluminum, and replace all the vinyl glazing strips, weatherstripping, fascia strip, and the plastic screw covers. I we replace the wood install trims on the interior as needed too. I also need to buy a rock guard for the front window, as the original is missing.
Frame work I will be replacing the hitch chains and the trailer jack. I am contemplating installing a 2 hitch too. I will have to redo the bottle mount to accept both a bottle and a battery
. I need to do the factory recall mending plates on the frame where it meets the body and the mounting bolts go through. I will redo the mounting bolts, and repaint the frame. I will look at installing some fixed stabilizers too.
Clean and Buff The exterior is covered with mold spots and has to be wiped down. There are also numerous cracks and pit marks in the gelcoat. My first option is to sand down the exterior with 600 grit wet sandpaper, and then repair the gelcoat as required. If there is enough damage to the gelcoat, I will then paint
it (and up goes the budget)
Door The door is way out of adjustment, I can barely latch it. I will remove it, fill the mounting holes and redrill new ones. The two panels the make up the door have separated along the top, and one place on the side, so I will have to epoxy them back together.
Belly Band It will be removed in order to inspect and determine what damage has occurred, plus allows for better cleaning and buffing of the exterior.
Wheels - I will replace the two wheels complete, as well as the spare. The axle
appears to be fine, but if need will replace (and up would go the budget further). I will redo the bearings too.
Hatches All four hatches, gravity water fill, city water, water drain, and electrical
all need to be changed. Lots of ideas here formulating in my mind, but nothing set in stone. I will use a 15A Marinco plug for the electrical, and use an extension cord to plug in. I will replace the city water. Not sure what I will do with the gravity fill, as I am going to minimally replace the water tank. Right now it is a bit lump under the passenger dinette seat, and I will either put in a low flat one there, so things can be placed on top, mount one underneath, or go with a portable unit. There is a still lot of pondering to do on it yet.
Interior I will strip pretty much everything out of the trailer, with the exception of the ensolite, which for the most part is in very good condition. It will need to be cleaned though. I dont think that this thing has ever seen a cleaning rag. The storage bins under seats are filthy, as are the shelves at the ends. There are about 3,189 dead flies in it.
There are sticky hooks everywhere on the fiberglass.
I will clean the fridge up. There is some surface rust on the painted parts, but that should clean up good. It looks quite good inside, and was working well on propane
Heater The DuoTherm heater looks to be in good shape, and was working good too. I may give it a coat of paint
on the cover.
Stove, sink, and taps The stove has been poorly painted, but works fine. I may try to take it back to original condition, though am not sure of what it is made of yet. The sink and taps should clean up fine, and will remain if in good working condition.
Fiberglass shelves The shelves at the ends of the trailer have lots of sag from use. Minimally, I will do something to stiffen them. Ultimately I will do some cabinets (up goes the budget again).
Flooring The old glue-down carpet and vinyl with be pulled, and the fiberglass floor scraped and cleaned. I will install new flooring. I may do a glue-down cork like I did in my trailer, but more likely will just do some Allure vinyl flooring.
Cushions All cushions will be replaced. My daughter will sew up new covers for them. She will also sew some new curtains for the windows
, as the originals are still in there, very faded.
Safety Will install new propane
and CO detectors, as well as install a fire extinguisher.
Other - There are lots of other little things that I will do too, and will discuss in the thread as the remodel continues.
I will list some of the parts I used to do this remodel, and will be looking for some ideas along the way. I hope to have all the work done well before the wedding in May.
LET THE FUN BEGIN!!!!!