Our 1971 13' Boler mods - Page 3 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 06-03-2015, 06:32 AM   #29
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Name: John
Trailer: '71 Boler, '87 Play-Mor II
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Originally Posted by Jay H View Post
Nice Thread John. I can see you have been working like crazy on your Boler but I agree, it should be better than new, it will be exactly as you want it! I share your pain about it being a bigger project than you had planned though. It is a slippery slope, one thing leads to the next and before you know it everything is apart and, well... it's going to take time to pit it back together.
I can't wait to see how it looks. Did you paint it yet?
No not yet I still have a few rivet holes to patch/fill and the weather here hasn't been too cooperative with afternoon storms...needless to say this will be painted outdoors. I hope to begin priming today or tomorrow if the weather will allow.
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Old 06-03-2015, 07:39 AM   #30
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Originally Posted by Jeannette in NS View Post
Can you post any photos of the floor construction?
Okay, here are some pictures showing the rotted floor being removed and replaced (you can see the square holes where I tried to cut the rot out to patch before decided to totally replace). There was a considerable amount of rotted floor wood on the upper floor (dinette area), under where the original kitchen sink/stove was, front floor under bunks and around the closet. I carefully cut using a dremel oscillating tool and a plunge cut blade from the top of the floor along the shell just cutting through where the top of the floor was glass in, making sure that I did not cut through where the floor was glassed in to the body from the under side of the floor ( ***See reasons why in last paragraph below***) After that was done and I had the floor free from all the sheet metal screws to the frame (and 1 set of 4" bolts under the front bunk area) I carefully pulled and pried the wood free from the glass underneath. My plan was to leave all the glass underneath in tack but I ended up having to cut the wood around the floor from about 2 to 3" in from the body edge as there was too much glass holding the floors in making it very difficult to remove. The rear floor also had to be cut into several pieces for me to remove it. It still left me enough though for a good lip all the way around for the new floor to sit on. I made reference marks on the frame & body with a sharpie & pencil as to where the corners of the old floor were. Then I used the old floor as my template to cut the new floor as you can see in the pictures. There was a good bit of filler between the rounded edges of the wood and the body that had to be removed for the new floor to fit and it was not as perfect of a fit as I would like but after glassing in it turned out pretty good I think. I think I may have cut the front floor off slightly as the front body sits slightly to the left from where it originally was to make the floor fit correctly to the frame inside the door.

Important note regarding floor removal: When removing/replacing the upper floors you must absolutely fiberglass them back to the shell/body all the way around the body with a minimum of 3 layers of fiberglass mat (do not use cloth) and bolt/screw the floor to the frame. If you bolt in the floor to the frame without glassing it in to the body, the body will just be sitting on the frame and could result in a catastrophic failure when pulled down the road.

FROM ABOVE REGARDING GLASS EDGE/LIP ON BOTTOM OF FLOOR: The reason for this is that even if the body is sitting on the frame when the new floor goes in, without the lip for reference the body could flex in the middle allowing the middle area of the body to not line up properly. This could cause major fit problems especially around your wheel wells and the door. When removing the floor from a Boler, Scamp, etc. ALWAYS remember to check the clearance of the tires to the front, back and inside of the wheel wells before permanently attaching the new floor. Luckily I discovered this before I glassed it in and had to used wood to shim between the wheel well and tires so the tires would not rub and keep the wheel wells vertically straight without flexing. There was evidence of some previous rubbing/marks/cracks on the drivers side wheel well maybe from the wrong size tire at one point or maybe a blowout.
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Old 06-03-2015, 08:03 AM   #31
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Wow, that floor replacement is a huge undertaking. I am totally impressed. you'll be able to host dance parties in your boler when you are done.
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Old 06-03-2015, 08:14 AM   #32
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Now for the last week or so in between glassing & filling & sanding the body prepping for primer & paint, I have been addressing our door. When we removed it I thought it seemed excessively heavy for a fiberglass door and after looking at some other posts of door rebuilds I decided to cut into it after discovering rot when we removed the door window. After cutting the entire door apart we discovered ALL the wood in the door was completely rotten and filled with water. I removed all the crud from within and grinded down to good fiberglass. My first attempt was to rebuild using plywood slats I cut from leftover scraps from the new floor. Using turnbuckles and eyes hooks and coat hanger wire, I clamped the door to the frame to get the curve, then removed and carefully place the wood slats in using Bondo filler. After that cured the door was just as heavy or heavier then before at nearly 40 pounds. Not to mention that the turn buckles didn't hold the shape correctly when I laid the door flat to the door didn't fit in the middle (to much curve).

Okay, 2nd attempt: I removed the wood slats & re-grinded the door to remove all the filler. Then with my wife's help I traced the door frame onto a sheet of cardboard for a template. Did one for the left & right side. Then I used 1" square tubing mild weldable steel and bent 2 supports to match the curve of the door/template. I didn't have a fancy bender so I improvised using a steel wheeled caster rated for 1000 pounds with enough clearance for the 1" square tubing to fit into. The steel caster cost me $12 at Northern tool. Bolted to a heavy sturdy steel table made the perfect bender. Then I welded it up with some square tubing cross members & screwed it to the fiberglass door. Fit was off, so I cut it back apart, tweek my bends a little. Then I clamped the door to the frame at the top and bottom to get "the perfect fit" and then I screwed only the curved frame pieces to the inside of the door. Then using my trusty square and some heavy magnets I welded the 3 cross members in place and walah! The door and frame now fit perfectly. I removed it from the door frame, unscrewed the frame from the door and using a 2 part permanent epoxy for metal & fiberglass bonded the frame to the door with screws back in until it cured. After it cured I removed the screws & check the fit & it was perfect. Next I filled the door with 1" foam board insulation, fiberglassed over the window and now I just have to do some finishing work (bondo filler & sanding) to the door before prime & paint.

Now the door is much lighter and stronger and should eliminate any possibility of poor fit in the future. The door now weighs in at about 25 pounds with the steel frame.
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Old 06-03-2015, 08:17 AM   #33
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Wow, that floor replacement is a huge undertaking. I am totally impressed. you'll be able to host dance parties in your boler when you are done.
Yes it was a huge undertaking, so was the door (next post), no wait the whole project lol...And yes it is sturdy enough now that you can dance on it...
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Old 06-22-2015, 12:42 AM   #34
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Okay so I have been making some progress on the interior. Cutting the compound curves has proved to be a real challenge but I am getting it done slow but sure...this weekend I finished up the build out of the new front bath, bunks and the cabinet to replace the closet. The bath walls & cabinet are constructed out of 3/4" plywood for the purpose of adding structural support to the roof. The bath walls and both sides of the cabinet are/will be glassed to the body. The bunk turned 90 degrees will function as bunks or couch but we won't be adding the side dinette functionality. I may make that mod in the future but I don't think there will be enough foot room under the table....

For the bathroom the main wall was cut from 1 4x8 piece with a a vertical 1x2 flushed to the front from floor to ceiling to closed the open end. Then I made a 1x2 frame inside the opening offset to the outside (flush with inside of bath wall) for the door. We went with an accordion type door that I picked up at Lowe's for $16 on clearance. I am trimming the bottom of the door to fit our opening of about 50" tall but will have the full width of 36" and it won't be in the way when open and will allow easy access for removing the porta pottie. The left side of the bath has a half wall tied into the 1/3 rd horizontal portion of the top bunk (glassed in as well) with another vertical portion above that offset about 4" to allow room for our instant hot water heater to be mounted and to add structural support to that portion of the top bunk. The front window will be entirely inside the bath room so I don't have to worry about sealing the bath wall up the middle of the window.

The cabinet to replace the closet holds the refrigerator nicely and has room for storage below and room above for either a cooktop or toaster oven and cabinet or a window a/c but not both. I am still on the fence about the roof top a/c vs the window unit. If I go with the window unit I have 2 places I can put it, above the fridge or under one of the rear benches. Either location presents its own problems with venting and condensation drainage. The roof top a/c would be so much easier if I knew a guaranteed way of supporting the roof to hold the weight.

I also made a platform for our vent out of 3 layers of 3/4" plywood to elevate the roof vent so the crank handle doesn't hang below the roof line. I was worried that we (I) would hit my head on it and break it. Now I just have to epoxy it to the roof & glass it in, just got to decide whether it is going where the a/c was or a new whole in front of the a/c.

I am toying with the idea of making a platform out of 3/4" plywood for the a/c but instead of making it completely solid I thought about cutting out squares in it to keep the weight down and so it is all 1 piece but has a complete frame and cross members in both directions and support directly around the a/c unit itself. I think this would work and add enough rigidity to support the a/c without sagging the roof. We will see.

I also got the drain for the shower worked out. I used small diameter PVC pipe with fittings & 90 degree elbow so the shower will drain down and away to the back side of the trailer where it can hook to our portable grey water tank or even to a sewer connection if available. The pvc pipe is designed to be removable when pulling the trailer so to prevent damage to it.

I also scored some really nice barn wood looking laminate at Lowe's for $5/box on clearance...should go nicely with the wood work which we plan to stain and/or polyurathane

I would love some input from you guys on what you think so far...
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Old 06-22-2015, 08:00 AM   #35
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Today I will be making a trip to All Rite Custom Manufacturing in Lithonia Georgia with my jalousie windows to buy all the necessary seals to rebuild them. I stopped by there Friday after my new favorite RV store Crown RV (much better than Camping World for parts if you are refurbishing/restoring and RV) in Conyers Georgia referred me to them. The guy took me into the shop to get a couple sample pieces of Trim-Lok for my door and their warehouse is huge, with a very impressive selection of spools of seals (my guess is around 100 or more). They had various sample in their lobby of custom & stock entrance doors, slider and crank out windows, hatches, vents, rv ladders, screen doors too. He said they will custom make almost anything. Very helpful guy. He gave me a free catalog, very impressed.
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Old 06-22-2015, 08:09 PM   #36
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Trailer: BOLER
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Awesome job so far. I really like the idea of moving the front bunk to the side. I showed my wife and she wants me to do that to our Boler. I truly can't wait to see photos of your Boler when it's all done.


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Old 07-06-2015, 09:17 PM   #37
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After many rounds of filler & sanding I finally got some primer on today...I started out with my Cambell Hausfeld sprayer (first time using one) and it seemed to spray okay but not doing this before I felt a might get it too thick or too thin in places, and the Majic paint is supposed to be thin even coats...so I switched to the roll and tip method. I was using 2" chip brushes and tipping at 90 degrees and used a foam roller but the tipping left visible bristle marks that were not flattening out (even with reducer added to thin it out) so I just rolled it on...I am thinking now that maybe you only roll & tip the top coats? Anyway, I think it may need some light wet sanding with 400 grit before the next coat to get rid of some roller marks...any way here are some pics that were actually taken right at dark but the camera brightened them up a lot so the real light streak that looks like I missed a spot is actually the reflection of a street light...one question I do have is it normal for filler areas to show through primer? I think it will cover up with pending coats but just wondered...hopefully this week I will finish up the paint, get the windows rebuilt/resealed and re-installed along with the new vent and some stain on the inside woodwork...
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Old 07-07-2015, 05:58 AM   #38
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Looking great Johnny M. You've given me some good ideas and encouragement to stick with my project. Keep it up and keep the pics coming, especially of the interior. I can only hope to get my outside looking as good as yours does with just the primer.
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Old 07-07-2015, 07:47 AM   #39
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Looking great Johnny M. You've given me some good ideas and encouragement to stick with my project. Keep it up and keep the pics coming, especially of the interior. I can only hope to get my outside looking as good as yours does with just the primer.
Thanks Mike, I looked at your Wisp remodel, it is coming along, you will get there...also, you might try some soft scrub on the shell, we did when we first got our boler and it clean up nicely...works well on the ensolite interior also...
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Old 07-09-2015, 10:43 AM   #40
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Nice Work!

We are just getting into our "Luxury Tent Project". The floors of our 83 Scamp need to be replaced. I do not know if the POs tried to fix it, or the owners before them, but it was all kinds of wrong!! Metal flashing with some kind of wood substance (old dresser/entertainment center) glued over it. What a mess!!! I am scared of this project because I have never used fiberglass before, but your posts and Ian's blog have helped. You guys do awesome work. This forum is a tremendous help. A big thank you to everyone, and keep the pictures coming. Our fixer upper Scamp might become a full restoration like your Boler. Best of Luck!!!!
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Old 07-10-2015, 01:23 PM   #41
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I am scared of this project because I have never used fiberglass before, but your posts and Ian's blog have helped. You guys do awesome work. This forum is a tremendous help. A big thank you to everyone, and keep the pictures coming. Our fixer upper Scamp might become a full restoration like your Boler. Best of Luck!!!!
The fiberglass work isn't too bad, but it can be messy working with the resin and the glass can really make you itch especially sanding it so get you a tyvek suit and some good masks or a respirator is a must (pay the extra money and avoid the cheap dust masks)...lots of cardboard or something similar is a good idea for working with the glass as it drips a lot especially in summer heat so the cardboard will help catch any mess. As far as laying the glass and apply the resin have plenty of chip brushes (large box of them at Harbor Freight for about $10), plenty of paper bowls for resin, Popsicle sticks from a craft store work great for mixing the resin...as far as the old floors try to get them out so you can puzzle piece them together to use as a template for cutting the new floor, then cut the out diameter about 1/2 inch larger than needed and then you can trim it a little at a time with your jig saw until you get that perfect fit (its tedious but worth it for the right fit to the body)...too tight or too loose to the body can cause problems...mark the body to the frame at the rear bumper and tongue before you remove anything so you have a reference when going in with the new ones...make sure you glass it well and thick enough to the body on both the upper and undersides as this is what holds the body to the floor (floor bolted to the frame) to prevent it from blowing off going down the road...if your not sure about the structural integrity part get someone who is experienced with fiberglass to work with you or to do it all...
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Old 07-10-2015, 01:53 PM   #42
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Update on Majic primer & paint job

Update on the Majic Paint...I primed it on Monday 7/6 and the can says wait at least 24 hours before the next coat...with our Georgia 90+ degree heat and high humidity the primer dried slowly...concerned I called Majic and got a lot of great information I thought I would pass on...first their paint is an alkyd type paint...it is extremely highly pigmented which is great and will go a long way...after expressing my concerns about the slow drying (still was not dry as of Thursday morning) and ready to strip it off the tech guy re-asuured me it would dry it just needed longer and that the primer film is probably too thick. He recommend getting a paint wet film thickness gauge which I am going to add to my tool box...Also he educated me on this type of paint and others including Marine 1 part polyurathane type paints and as well as modified alkyds...according to him Majic makes 1 version of this tractor paint for sale in all the states rather than 1 for California, 1 for another, etc. etc. due to governmental VOC regulations. This Tractor Truck and Implement paint is a low VOC paint, meaning it has very low amounts of additives such as thinners. And it is very thick. Their literature and lables recommend using only their reducer to thin it along with their hardner. Apparently they cant recommend using more than what they recommend for hardner or reducer but he did say using more than they specify won't hurt the product and would help its application, achieving thinner coats (which help with dry times) and a better harder finish. In fact when I pressed him about the use of paint thinner for roll & tip he said using up to 30% paint thinner would help the laydown for roll & tipping...he went on to say he personally had seen it done with excellent results...Also he educated me on thinners, paint thinner being the slowest to evaporate allowing for a better dry time vs other like naptha, xolulene, acetone, etc...KEY POINT: Alkyd paints dry from the top down, meaning they will skin on top first and be soft underneath until completely dry, which is exactly what happened in my case, the paint was soft underneath, but with each passing day it got harder. He assured me the paint would dry very hard and would work just fine on fiberglass. He recommended 1 thin coat for fiberglass since your are not protecting anything from rusting just as a sealer & binder for the top coat...the primer must be sanded smooth with 400 grit or higher before applying the top coat. I am sanding the primer now plus touching up a few areas & getting prepped for top coating...I will keep everyone updated & post some pictures of the top coat once applied & maybe some of me roll & tipping....
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a/c, air conditioner, bath, bathroom, boler, closet, door, floor, rebuild, restoration, roof top, shower, toilet


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