Renovation Company specializing in FGRV? - Fiberglass RV


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Old 08-14-2018, 11:19 AM   #1
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Name: Sarah
Trailer: Boler
Washington
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Renovation Company specializing in FGRV?

I have a 1979 13' Boler, which is in good condition but needs some renovation. I was going to try to tackle it myself, a little bit at a time, but it's stacking up to be a little more than I think I can handle.

Does anyone have experience with a company to perform the renovation work? Particularly, one based in the Pacific Northwest. There are quite a few "tin can" reno outfits, but prefer someone who has experience/specializes in FGRV.

Thanks.

EDIT: Looking for "top to toe" type reno (structural and decor).

EDIT 2:
Some structural issues:
- Standard door issues - water in the door, flattening and bottom gapping of door, probably leaky window seal
- Door hinges may need replaced
- Jalousie windows need re-sealed
- New vent, with fan
- Rock guard repair (has a couple rock guard arms installed that are broken)
- New plexiglass and seals for front and back windows
- Check frame
- Re-wire
- Gel coat and possibly decals
- Solar

Interior refresh:
- LED lighting
- New cushions and reupholstery
- Cabinet door and table replace/repair and hardware
- New curtains
- New refrigerator/repair
- New flooring
- Faucet and water line repairs (exterior water tank vs. mounted?)
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Old 08-14-2018, 11:26 AM   #2
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Name: Daniel
Trailer: '82 Burro - payment sent
Northern VA
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Not sure about RV specific, but if you need fiberglass work, might try looking around marinas or other boating related businesses. Might find someone who does other work in spare time.
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Old 08-14-2018, 11:35 AM   #3
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Name: Sarah
Trailer: Boler
Washington
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I edited my original post. I'm hoping for one person to handle all the structural as well as interior work. Basically, to get it all done at once.
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Old 08-14-2018, 01:46 PM   #4
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Name: Greg
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Perhaps offering up some better, and more specific, details of what you feel you need to have done would help. "Needing some renovation" really doesn't give anyone enough to offer you guidance on just what specifically you are looking to accomplish. (GIGO)
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Old 08-14-2018, 05:41 PM   #5
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Thanks for the suggestion, I edited to add the post with the list I have so far.
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Old 08-14-2018, 06:25 PM   #6
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Sarah,

I suspect that a "company" would have to charge a fair amount to take on that sort of projects. In stick-built housing, a remodel costs more more than new construction as there is so much demolition and one-off custom work involved. Remodeling trailers is similar.

I think you would do well to find a "person" or two, (who might be operating as a company), but who has very low-overhead and is also very meticulous to do this sort of project. Perhaps someone who does this as a "sideline" business.

Most folks who restore vehicles, boats, planes and the like will freely admit that the hours involved would have made it prohibitively expensive to have the work done by an outside party who has overhead. It's generally a labor of love.

That said, there are some (very) small companies that renovate vintage trailers and such, so maybe you will connect with someone who can meet your expectations and your budget. Maybe you will connect with somebody who knows of somebody who in turn gives you the name of someone else... These searches are often like that.

Here's someone who is located in the northwest. They have a portfolio of stick and tin trailers on their web site and I don't personally know a thing about them. But, maybe it's a place to start...

https://www.columbian.com/news/2017/...tage-trailers/

https://www.downrivertrailers.com/
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Old 08-14-2018, 06:46 PM   #7
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Name: Gordon
Trailer: 2015 Scamp (16 Std Layout 4) with '15 Toyota Sienna LE Tug
North Carolina
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There seem to be a few people who make a hobby or business out of restoring molded fiberglass campers. I believe that Greg who runs the Scamp Owners International web site is one and has done maybe a few dozen or more Scamps. Scamps and Bolers are very similar, but I assume he usually restores the campers for resale, so what would be his incentive for doing yours? Perhaps cash, but I would guess that by the time he addresses all the things on your list, it would be less expensive to buy a new Scamp, Casita, etc.

And did you know that there is a major Boler event staring tomorrow? Ian Giles is likely the most prolific and knowledgeable person alive when it comes to Boler’s and he will be there (as organizer). I would guess that other Boler restorers will be there also. Again, I understand this is far from you and short notice, but it is the kind of networking I would suggest. Be sure and see his other web sites:
http://www.boler-camping.com/portfol...of-your-boler/
http://www.boler-camping.com/portfol...-of-the-boler/
etc....

If it were a Scamp, I would say that the ONLY business that meets your criteria is Evelands, the company that is Scamp. And since Boler’s are pretty similar they might well be a good place to have work done. Trouble is they are in northern Minnesota (and labor is $75 an hour).

My last thought is that maybe it would be best to sell the camper to someone like Greg or Ian and then go find one that needs little of no work. It is also reasonable to learn many of the required skills, and combine that with networking with local RV owners since many RV’s are similar in many respects.
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Old 08-14-2018, 07:02 PM   #8
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PS.. to give you an idea why I think paying for all the work you want done is maybe a bad idea, I just went to Evelands (Scamp) to have a hole in the shell (about 12 x 16 inches) repaired, and a furnace installed. I did a very little of the preliminary work and my total bill was just under $1,000. $385 of that was the actual cost of the furnace (without labor). Figure about $500 for the fiberglass patch and $500 for a furnace install or replacement. And I really do think that Evelands does the work for less than most any other commercial business.
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Old 08-14-2018, 08:23 PM   #9
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Here's another example of costs. I got a quote for regelcoating the lower from of my 13' Scamp. Sit down. the quote was $4,000.
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Old 08-15-2018, 05:00 AM   #10
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Name: K C
Trailer: 1971 Trailswest Campster
Washington
Posts: 1,975
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sarah in Seattle View Post
I have a 1979 13' Boler, which is in good condition but needs some renovation. I was going to try to tackle it myself, a little bit at a time, but it's stacking up to be a little more than I think I can handle.

Does anyone have experience with a company to perform the renovation work? Particularly, one based in the Pacific Northwest. There are quite a few "tin can" reno outfits, but prefer someone who has experience/specializes in FGRV.

Thanks.

EDIT: Looking for "top to toe" type reno (structural and decor).

EDIT 2:
Some structural issues:
- Standard door issues - water in the door, flattening and bottom gapping of door, probably leaky window seal
- Door hinges may need replaced
- Jalousie windows need re-sealed
- New vent, with fan
- Rock guard repair (has a couple rock guard arms installed that are broken)
- New plexiglass and seals for front and back windows
- Check frame
- Re-wire
- Gel coat and possibly decals
- Solar

Interior refresh:
- LED lighting
- New cushions and reupholstery
- Cabinet door and table replace/repair and hardware
- New curtains
- New refrigerator/repair
- New flooring
- Faucet and water line repairs (exterior water tank vs. mounted?)
I don't know of anyone who is going to do that for you for an affordable price all in one place. Truthfully you don't need someone who is specialized in FGRV for these repairs so forget about that, it is not important.

I suggest instead that you approach it the way many homeowners handle a remodel...be your own contractor and schedule in subcontractors for different aspects of the work. You will need to figure out which task need to be done before others. You should buy many of the special RV specific supplies yourself to save the labor cost of having someone shopping for them and then taking a markup on the prices. Keep that extra cost in your pocket, you will need it for the labor cost of repairs.

I will break it down for you as to who to get for what job.

Some structural issues:
- Standard door issues - water in the door, flattening and bottom gapping of door, probably leaky window seal..... You need a really good fiberglass repair person for this task as it is complex. There are some good ones in Seattle in the Ballard area...they are too busy at this time of year, but it is a job they can do in their shop in the winter.

- Door hinges may need replaced...generalized home handy man job

- Jalousie windows need re-sealed ....also home handy man job...you get the parts for that person, you have no choice but to order specialized seals online from vintage RV supply sources.

- New vent, with fan ...another home handy man job, you provide the parts.

- Rock guard repair (has a couple rock guard arms installed that are broken)...another home handy man job, you can get the parts online for them.

- New plexiglass and seals for front and back windows....auto glass repair company work for the install, you provide the seals from an online source. The panes can be cut for you by various plastic supply companies. You can make the paper pattern to take in to them.

- Check frame... auto collision repair shops can inspect the frame for integrity

- Re-wire ....another home handy man job

- Gel coat and possibly decals... marine repair business for gel coat, auto graphics company for the decals.

-Solar another home handy man job, they just need to be able to follow the instructions and watch a video or two ...you can buy a kit with all the pieces needed in it. Go to a solar supplier that sells DIY kits and has online instructions.

Interior refresh:
- LED lighting ...generalized handy man can do this, you order the lights

- New cushions and reupholstery, ..any local upholstery business

- Cabinet door and table replace/repair and hardware....cabinet maker or possibly your handy man if they have a wood working shop setup.

- New curtains... ask at the local senior center they will know someone who likes to sew and could use the extra income. Fabric stores also tend to have list of local persons who sew.

- New refrigerator/repair ... go to an RV repair company, lots of them around to the north and south of Seattle, check yelp for reviews

- New flooring..another generalized handy man task

- Faucet and water line repairs (exterior water tank vs. mounted?) Faucet and water lines ...generalized handy man..

As to the type of tank...discuss it more in this forum and make a decision as to what you want...could be a handy man job or might be an RV repair place, just depends on what you decide on.

So basically you need to find yourself a man or woman who has a handy person service for the majority of the task on your the list. Negotiate an hourly rate, you will soon know if they work fast and efficiently. If not look for someone else. The rest of the work is fairly easy to find companies for

The most difficult task will be finding someone to rebuild the door who is competent at fitting irregular shapes and good with fiberglass repair. But as I said, it is the wrong time of year to find them. Those persons are in their busy season. But talk to this company, they may know someone who does small side jobs and what you have is a small (in size) side job that can be done by a single, talented, individual. But it won't be inexpensive as it will take a number of hours to accomplish. http://pacificfiberglass.com/
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Old 08-15-2018, 05:25 AM   #11
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Name: Shelby
Trailer: Casita SD
Tennessee
Posts: 189
Maybe consider selling the Boler and buying something already in a condition that suits you. Restoration rarely makes financial sense unless you enjoy/have time to do a lot of the work yourself. Bolers are easy to sell. If you are attached to this particular trailer for some reason, then that's another story. Best of luck, either way.
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Old 08-15-2018, 05:28 AM   #12
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Name: K C
Trailer: 1971 Trailswest Campster
Washington
Posts: 1,975
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sarah in Seattle View Post
I have a 1979 13' Boler, which is in good condition but needs some renovation. I was going to try to tackle it myself, a little bit at a time, but it's stacking up to be a little more than I think I can handle.

Does anyone have experience with a company to perform the renovation work? Particularly, one based in the Pacific Northwest. There are quite a few "tin can" reno outfits, but prefer someone who has experience/specializes in FGRV.

Thanks.

EDIT: Looking for "top to toe" type reno (structural and decor).

EDIT 2:
Some structural issues:
- Standard door issues - water in the door, flattening and bottom gapping of door, probably leaky window seal
- Door hinges may need replaced
- Jalousie windows need re-sealed
- New vent, with fan
- Rock guard repair (has a couple rock guard arms installed that are broken)
- New plexiglass and seals for front and back windows
- Check frame
- Re-wire
- Gel coat and possibly decals
- Solar

Interior refresh:
- LED lighting
- New cushions and reupholstery
- Cabinet door and table replace/repair and hardware
- New curtains
- New refrigerator/repair
- New flooring
- Faucet and water line repairs (exterior water tank vs. mounted?)
I don't know of anyone who is going to do that for you for an affordable price all in one place. I suggest instead that you approach it the way many homeowners handle a remodel...be your own contractor and schedule in subcontractors for different aspects of the work. You will need to figure out which task need to be done before others. You should buy many of the special RV specific supplies in advance to save the labor cost of having someone shopping for them and then taking a markup on the prices.


I will break it down for you as to who to get for what job.

Some structural issues:
- Standard door issues - water in the door, flattening and bottom gapping of door, probably leaky window seal..... You need a really good fiberglass repair person for this task as it is complex. There are some good ones in Seattle in the Ballard area...they are too busy at this time of year, but it is a job they can do in their shop in the winter. Leaky window seal in door, have an auto glass company do this when they install the front and back windows.


- Door hinges may need replaced...generalized home handy man job. If new hinges are needed then you will have to order them. But do look at the forum threads for Boler door hinge issues so you yourself can evaluate if they need replacing or work done on the surfaces they mount to. People on the forum will help you decide if you post photos of what you have.

- Jalousie windows need re-sealed ....also home handy man job...you get the parts for that person, you have no choice but to order specialized seals online from vintage RV supply sources. There are some youtube videos around showing what to do.

- New vent, with fan ...another home handy man job, you provide the parts.

- Rock guard repair (has a couple rock guard arms installed that are broken)...another home handy man job, you can get the parts online for them.

- New plexiglass and seals for front and back windows....auto glass repair company work for the install, you provide the seals from an online source. The panes can be cut for you by various plastic supply companies. You can make the paper pattern to take in to them.

- Check frame... auto collision repair shops can inspect the frame for integrity

- Re-wire ....another home handy man job

- Gel coat and possibly decals... marine repair business for gel coat, auto graphics company for the decals.


- Solar another home handy man job, they just need to be able to follow the instructions and watch a video or two ...you can buy a kit with all the pieces needed in it. Go to a solar supplier that sells DIY kits and has online instructions.
Perhaps some of the RV shops in Seattle are doing solar work. If not there are companies in Oregon, California and Arizona who do it. Road trip time?


Interior refresh:
- LED lighting ...generalized handy man can do this, you order the lights

- New cushions and reupholstery, ..any local upholstery business

- Cabinet door and table replace/repair and hardware....cabinet maker

- New curtains... ask at the local senior center they will know someone who likes to sew and could use the extra income

- New refrigerator/repair ... go to an RV repair company, lots of them around to the north and south of Seattle, check yelp for reviews

- New flooring..another generalized handy man task

- Faucet and water line repairs (exterior water tank vs. mounted?) Faucet and water lines ...generalized handy man..

As to the type of tank...discuss it more in this forum and make a decision as to what you want...could be a handy man job or might be an RV repair place, just depends on what you decide on.

So basically you need to find yourself a man or woman who has a handy person service for the majority of the task on your the list. Negotiate an hourly rate, you will soon know if they work fast and efficiently. If not look for someone else. The rest of the work is fairly easy to find companies for

The most difficult task will be finding someone to rebuild the door who is competent at fitting irregular shapes and good with fiberglass repair. But as I said, it is the wrong time of year to find them. Those persons are in their busy season.
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Old 08-15-2018, 09:53 AM   #13
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Name: Greg
Trailer: 2008 Casita 17 SD
Washington
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With the trailer being just about 40 years old, and obviously it has not been well maintained by any sense, I'd bet money that your trailers' frame and axle are probably shot as well. It'd be a shame to do all that upgrading and remodeling only to have the rotted rusty trailer frame collapse right before your eyes. You may want to have a metal shop measure it, draw it up, and weld you up a new frame, but then, it's also another expense. Your "bargain" trailer is starting to add up to some big $$$$ as you go along.
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Old 08-16-2018, 03:31 AM   #14
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Name: K C
Trailer: 1971 Trailswest Campster
Washington
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How about a different approach... iake a look at how much a fully renovated Boler sold for recently.

SOLD: Fully Restored BOLER Trailer For Sale - $10,500 (Vancouver / Lower Mainland)

That might be Canadian $$ they put in the listing or they might be US dollars. Of course we don't know what they paid for it or if they felt that they got their investment of labor back in the selling price. But you could contact them and ask those questions.

You do need some kind of bottom line to measure against for how much it would be worth as a fully renovated trailer and if the cost of the estimates for repairs will prove out to be good return in $$ value.
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