'81 burro 13' rebuild has begun - Fiberglass RV


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Old 04-22-2008, 08:43 PM   #1
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up until now, i've been in the research & planning stage of my rebuild, but today i officially started the project...
i had already gutted the inside of almost everything except the taillight harnesses, & cleaned the inside wall superficially...
today i started the removal of the shell from the frame, which was made really easy when i lifted the trailer, & the frame kinda fell off... so i rolled the trailer shell over onto the door side, & started cutting the floor out... most of the wood floor came out in pieces, with the fiberglass sheeting the only thing holding it together...
most of the floor is cut out, & i only need to clean out the edges, which i will do when i get it moved out of my garden, & up on pallets...

i have a few pics that i'll be posting a little later tonight...
--- steven
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Old 04-23-2008, 08:14 AM   #2
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Best of luck Steven! Sounds like you've got quite a project going. As you know we love to at pictures... can't wait to see how the build turns out

Burro frame? Let's see this is the only topic I can offer, where someone beefed up the frame on a 13 foot BigFoot.. TOTAL MAKEOVER - includes pics
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Old 04-25-2008, 05:24 PM   #3
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ok i think i've got the pics resized rightly...
like i mentioned before, the floor kinda fell apart, & the F/G was the only thing holding it together...
i managed to split the seam in the front when it was tipping over, but it should be an easy repair, compared to the other holes/cracks/etc...
i got my first paycheck from my job, & it is not enough to buy the wood for the floor or the epoxy & F/G mat i need to attach it with... so this project will hafta wait a couple more weeks until i have the $$ to move forward... until then, i'll trim/clean the edges, & get it up on pallets raised enough that i can work on it...
any suggestions on what thickness plywood i should use for the floor...? i'd like to keep it light, & i plan to F/G the floor on the outside edges, too... then undercoat/waterproof the floor, & insulate...
--- steven
Attached Thumbnails
rolling_camper_001.jpg   rolling_camper_002.jpg  

rolling_camper_003.jpg   rolling_camper_005.jpg  

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Old 04-25-2008, 05:36 PM   #4
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Thats cool. This is going to be a fun one to watch.....
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Old 04-25-2008, 07:09 PM   #5
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"You killed it, Charlie Brown"

I can't look, but I can't help but look...

Thats almost sad.. like a whale lying on the beach, but it's part of the process for making it new and spiffy again!

You'll get it back up and running again tho. Good luck!
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Old 04-25-2008, 10:19 PM   #6
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any suggestions on what thickness plywood i should use for the floor...?
Most trailer manufacturers use 1/2" thick plywood for the floor. When I rebuilt my Compact Jr., I replaced the floor with 3/4" thick plywood, and increased the total weight of my trailer... But I had a solid stable floor...
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Old 04-26-2008, 01:03 AM   #7
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^^^
yeah, it's a bit of a nightmare, right now... but i'm not gonna figure in the time i invest in it, just the $$ for materials... so i'm still ahead if i budget right... lol... right now the tear-down is cheap&easy, but the build up will be the costly part... this trailer was one foot in the grave, so it's a complete salvage job, IMHO... so i don't might getting a bit creative with it... it'll still be a Burro, but unlike other Burros, i imagine...
looking at the floorplan, i might hafta use 2 layers of 1/4", or 3 layers of 1/8th", glued together with proper overlap,, & a frame that supports everything well, especially the door area... i'd like to keep it light, but the floor is where i can't afford to skimp... besides, the weight would be low, where i want it...
i'm planning to make the finish floor custom... i know a guy who has some wood flooring that was taken out of a bowling alley that i'm trying to acquire... especially if i can get the boards with the marker arrows...

the pics i'll post in the next few weeks will be much better-looking, almost like a gutted trailer someone would pay $$ for... lol... still no frame, but a decent shell & floor... so i guess for part of this summer, i'm building a really really neat garden shed in my backyard... so my neighbors can't complain... lol...
--- steven
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Old 05-01-2008, 07:42 PM   #8
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All I got to say is...Wow!

I wouldn't use less than 5/8ths thickness wood for the floor. 3/4 is probably the better move since once it's done you don't ever, ever want to create reason to have do it over again. Fortunately, I did not have to lift the cab off the frame like you done. I think if you're gonna add weight, this is the area where it will best pay you back.

I was replacing only the rotten parts (fell through the old floor first time i stepped into it). That resulted in butting up plywood sections, thereby creating seams. So, I coated it all with a skim coat of fiberglass before I added the 1/4 inch sub-floor on top. I think doing the skim coat is a prudent move for you, too. And then I done a finished 1/2 inch thick oak flooring on top of that, but this came free, since some contractor dumped two full cartons of it at the county dump where I often shop.

Great good luck to you. The more you work on this project, the easier it becomes.
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Old 05-08-2008, 10:34 AM   #9
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i moved the shell to a better location, with "level" ground... i had trouble coordinating my friends to help me carry it, so i decided to roll it... i don't have pics of me rolling it, but a had a chuckle at the irony of rolling a giant eggshell up a hill & across the lawn... it suffered no damage in the process, but got a few grass stains...
i'll edit this post later with some pics, it looks nice under the trees...

i need to locate some wood pallets to get it off the ground & start clearing out the fiberglass for the new floor... i'mna try to get to a local bodywork supply store to get resin & mat to get started on the shell repairs this weekend...
--- steven
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Old 06-02-2008, 03:09 AM   #10
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ok, i've been working on other stuff for the last few weeks, & i'm finally getting back to my burro... i found some pallets & i have it sitting on them...
i need to get some epoxy for the f/g repair & molding the new floor in... does anyone have any recommendations...? & where i can order it from...?
also, i need to remove latex house paint that was brushed on the entire trailer... it will be getting external repairs, & a new gelcoat/paint...
should i sand it off...? can i use a flap-wheel sander...?
--- steven
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Old 06-02-2008, 08:56 AM   #11
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" I want it over there.
OK, I'll just roll it on over".
The neighbours must be havin' a hoot watching you work.
"Maybee it's a kids playhouse?"
Think of the work as similar to doing auto body work. Sanding may take a little longer but that flapwheel might just eat right through it. You gotta give us more pictures. We love 'em and though we might laugh, we might just pick up some ideas.
I love a fresh aproach.
Jim
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Old 06-02-2008, 09:00 AM   #12
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As to supplies. Look for a marina or a marine repair shop nearby. An autobody shop may be a good source also.
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