1979 Trillium Restoration by The Egg Plant - Fiberglass RV


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Old 05-04-2014, 02:55 PM   #1
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1979 Trillium Restoration by The Egg Plant

A couple years ago, we made some repairs to a leaky front window on this Trillium. Now it's back because the rear windows are shot too...

The Trillium window is mounted through its aluminum frame with screws that twist into inner frames made of plywood. Over time, the window pulls away from the FG shell body allowing water to seep in, which in turn saturates the plywood.

This wet wood rots over time and causes the screws to rust, which further weakens the window seal.

The only appropriate repair is to remove the old, rotten wood and glass in replacements. But instead of plywood, we will use a product called NyloBoard a resin/wood composite material that is impervious to rot. And unlike something akin to "Trex", NyloBoard has terrific strength holding screws.
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Old 05-04-2014, 03:10 PM   #2
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Having a Trillium w/ leaking windows and potential wood rot issues is NyloBoard locally available? I'm just over the hill from you i n the valley. Sounds like a great product for this application.
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Old 05-04-2014, 03:13 PM   #3
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Contact the manufacturer for availability in your area.
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Old 05-05-2014, 10:26 AM   #4
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How does the weight compare to plywood?

Any secrets you want to share on separating the Ensolite from the plywood?
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Old 05-05-2014, 10:34 AM   #5
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The NyloBoard is denser and heavier than plywood, but the frames are only 3" wide with a 45 bevel along the long sides.

Separating the Ensolite from the original plywood was not easy. I used a sharp putty knife, razor blade and patience.
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Old 05-08-2014, 06:35 PM   #6
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Yea, not easy. I have done one back window on a Trillium 4500. Only 23 windows to go.

I like grinding fibreglass much better.
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Old 05-20-2014, 12:21 AM   #7
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Hi Robert,
We just purchased a 79 Trillium Jubilee and I am just starting to look at products to replace the original ensolite. Can you tell me what you are using? Thanks.
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Old 05-25-2014, 01:32 PM   #8
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We are not replacing the Ensolite on this project. The current condition is decent.

Several threads elsewhere on this Forum already available to you about ins and outs of replacement Ensolite.
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Old 09-07-2014, 07:38 PM   #9
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It has been a while since my last post about this project. Been awfully busy...

The owner of this Trillium decided that with all of the windows out and the internal frames being rebuilt, now would be the opportune time to have the trailer repainted.

We thought the body was in relatively decent shape, but the current paint job was horrible. So we stripped everything off the exterior. That, and a little scraping revealed some other problems with the gelcoat and fiberglass. Especially around the window corners and door frame.
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Old 09-07-2014, 07:44 PM   #10
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As is usually the case, one thing lead to another. We found some damage around the belly band, and gobs of silicone, which is an indication of other problems.

Pulling the belly band off revealed numerous rusted (some nearly gone!) mounting clips. Over time, these became holes under the band, allowing water to infiltrate. Thus the need for the silicone!
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Old 09-07-2014, 07:56 PM   #11
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The interior was not in any better shape than the outside with some evidence of FG cracking to the internal forms. So we removed everything held down by a screw.

Of course, as is the case with nearly every restoration, this trailer had 35+ years of nasty dirt packed into every nook and cranny.

However, the Ensolite was in surprisingly good shape no tears or holes just a few spots where the plastic seam covers were missing.
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Old 09-07-2014, 08:04 PM   #12
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After everything was removed from the interior, we tried to clean as much as possible. I started with scrapers, wire brushes, solvents and the vacuum, then followed up with the power washer.

After everything dried, another pass with scrubbers, brushes and the vac.

It was now as clean inside as I could make it.
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Old 09-07-2014, 08:18 PM   #13
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The plan was to not only paint the outside, but the inside as well. But the inside would get a bedliner-like texture coat. This would help to hide the few flaws in the FG as well as freshen the look of the old Ensolite.

Of course, just like the exterior, this would mean FG repairs to the interior components filling all old holes and superfluous cut-outs. Plus some judicious use of caulk to help hide some of the Ensolite seams and problem areas.

Here you can see the shell stripped of old paint and some of the body work, including the belly band.
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Old 09-07-2014, 08:28 PM   #14
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We found a paint color that was nearly identical to the original gel coat color, but decided a contrasting color to the top shell would be great.

While the shell was being repainted, we had the frame sandblasted, inspected and repainted. The axle was still in good shape, but replaced the original hubs with new drums with 10" electric brakes.

Check it out.
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