Building a new Bigfoot rock cover - Fiberglass RV


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Old 08-15-2016, 06:58 PM   #1
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Name: Richard
Trailer: Bigfoot 19'
British Columbia
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Building a new Bigfoot rock cover

Our new to us Bigfoot did not come with a cover for the front window. So I have made some decisions as to how I want the new one to look and have bought my fiber glassing materials today. Here's hoping it works and looks well.
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Old 08-15-2016, 07:08 PM   #2
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oooh, this is going to be a fun one to watch. You are going to post pictures as you move along the build. Right?
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Old 08-16-2016, 08:53 AM   #3
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Yeah, I'm with Donna. Very interested and hoping for many pics.

Walt
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Old 08-16-2016, 09:39 PM   #4
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Name: Richard
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forming

So I picked up a 5'x5' 1/8 Baltic Birch panel today and a couple strips of Trim Tech Plastic corner bead 3/4" round. On my way home from the Hardware store I stopped at the Dollar Store and bought some large sheets of poster paper.

When I got home I taped two of the sheets together and then taped the edge of the paper to the center line of the window. With the paper up against the window and frame I used my new fiberglass roller to force an imprint of the frame into the paper. I cut the form in the paper out and traced it on to the 1/8" ply. I added 1 1/4" around the perimeter to allow for the frame of the window and to give my self some grace when fitting the final product.

For the rounded edges and the depth of the cover I am using plastic drywall corner bead. I plan on fairing out the slight ridge between the mold and ply with bondo or something similar.

So in an afternoon I have gone from raw material to some semblance of what the product is going to look like.

Needless to say I'm pretty happy with progress so far. Although I think I have come to my first road block. The CORNERS.

Hmmm Perhaps if I use the bucket I used to draw my radius my corners as a mold I can make some strips of fiberglass to fit the corner.

Any thoughts?
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Old 08-16-2016, 10:01 PM   #5
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pictures

here's some pics ... found the destruction's. Perhaps a stand alone sticky for such an FAQ

Richard
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Old 08-16-2016, 10:10 PM   #6
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Donna is the go to gal , she's has helped me more than once
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Old 08-18-2016, 09:39 PM   #7
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bondo and others

well lesson learnt today is that Bondo cures very fast at 27 deg c. I would get about 4-5 mins maybe less working time.

I think I'm going to use foam to form the corners. A friend at work is going to see if he has a 3/4 round over bit with a 1/4" shank. If not I guess I'm carving.

I'll grab some foam at work tomorrow Perhaps I can find some broken stuff before it hits the garbage. I'm looking forward to getting to laying up some glass.
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Old 08-18-2016, 09:54 PM   #8
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I can tell you no one reads the stickies. Just make certain you use good words for search. There's lots of us here to help newbies with questions and can provide URLs to the terrific archives (mods done previous to TODAY).
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Old 08-19-2016, 08:56 AM   #9
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thank you Donna

thanks for replying Donna.

More posts coming in the manufacturing process. Still working on the corners.
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Old 08-21-2016, 08:39 PM   #10
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Over the past few days I have carved out foam corners out of Cel200 Pink rigid insulation. Icoated the corners with packing tape and then used Bondo to get closer to the perfect shape.

This evening I wiped down the surfaces with Acetone after removing all the dust and applied my first coat of resin to the whole top side on both halves.

Tomorrow I hope to cut and place Chopped Strand Mat (CSM) over the pieces and do my first fiber glassing officially. I sure hope I can get the foam blocks out easily after I have layed up the glass.

I plan on two layers of CSM on both inside and out I may put a finer texture cloth on the outside if I feel the texture is too rough before I jell coat.
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Old 08-22-2016, 09:10 PM   #11
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layed down my first layer of fiberglass ont he top sides. on one side I was patient and thought ahead. then i was excited and went on to the next. So the first one came out fairly nice. The second one on the other hand was less nice. I had to fix the corners and cut out some air bubbles and re do them after the first cure. lessons learnt.

One in the many things I am sure I did wrong was i neglected to lay some resin down before i lay the csm down that would have helped a great deal in the wetting out of the mat.

No matter one layer down one more to go on the top. then I will flip the sections over and do the backsides. My plan is to make a frame that represents the angle of the front of the trailer I will then join the two pieces at the correct angle. I am concerned that the junction may be a weak spot and may fail over time. If so I will re-engineer or make it a two part cover but for the moment I'm going for gold.
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Old 08-22-2016, 09:50 PM   #12
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I make a lot of vacuum forming moulds for plastic and have come to the conclusion that the first one is always a prototype. By the time I get the details correct (angles, radius, etc) I usually find I have to make a new one using the old (the prototype) as a pattern. It's a learning curve.........
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Old 08-22-2016, 10:17 PM   #13
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If you have trouble getting the last of the little bits of foam cleared out just dissolve it. Acetone and other solvents dissolve the EPS foams.
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Old 08-23-2016, 09:32 PM   #14
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success

Well I just finished putting the second layer of CSM on the 2nd exterior part and had some resin left over. So I flipped over the first part and removed the foam corners. I had used dbl sided tape to hold the forms in place while I added bondo and then the glass and resin. In an effort to stop the resin and bondo from bonding to the foam I used packing tape.

I gotta say so far that worked great! The foam forms just popped right out!

I was able to use the remaining resin inside the corners with some small pieces of CSM.

The edges look really rough right now but I'm planning to trim them off using an oscillating saw using a board as a guide.

So far so good.
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