Scamp 13-prioritizing updates - Fiberglass RV


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Old 03-01-2016, 11:48 AM   #1
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Name: Carrie
Trailer: Scamp 13
Massachusetts
Posts: 52
Scamp 13-prioritizing updates

Hi! We are a family of 4 and have a 1993 Scamp 13 that we acquired last fall but we haven't used it yet. We got it primarily for a trip to Alaska next summer, and as the weather turns nicer we are planning the improvements and updates we need to make, and I'd love some input on how to prioritize the needs, particularly considering that we will be using it for a long stretch of time (7 weeks) on a long trip.

Just to further clarify, we intend to stay primarily at national/state parks and hookups are not a priority- we'll hook up if it's there, but we won't seek it out. (We're tent campers so the scamp itself feels like an upgrade anyway).

Here are the things we definitely are planning to do:
- fixing a soft spot in the floor under the dinette bench due to a past water leak.
- getting new upholstery from Scamp
-new curtains
-re-installing the missing wood in the bunks so we can use them
-doing something with the cabinet doors (paint or just make new ones)
- add vinyl flooring (we have some leftover from a basement project).
-paint/rustoleum the tongue and bumper
-buff/wax the outside

I'm wondering about the following items- I suppose it would be best to do all, but all of this can add up to lots of $$ if we do everything we want to. So what would you prioritize? (some of these we obviously have to do but there are various options/price points)

-Our axle, as far as we know, is original- it's not in terrible shape as far as we can tell. Considering we're going on such a long trip, we were wondering about getting a new axle with brakes.
-I think the converter is also original. Do we need a new one of those?
-Our tail lights work, but the other exterior trailer lights do not. I know we need to fix that.
-LED lights?
-Currently have 2 propane tanks and the battery is inside under the front seat. Considering going to 1 tank and moving the battery back to the tongue.
-We need some kind of gray water disposal setup- the previous owners just let it drop on the ground.
-We have to buy whatever else we need specifically for a trailer as opposed to a tent (chocks, other cords? adapters? I don't even understand what we need in terms of power hookups because we've never done it).
-Front window rock guard? Currently don't have one.

And other things I have my eye on but aren't priorities:
-new faucet, or maybe even a new butcher block countertop to go with the new faucet
-mouse hole conversion

Anything I'm forgetting?

Thanks!
Carrie
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Old 03-01-2016, 02:07 PM   #2
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Name: Lyle
Trailer: Scamp 13
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Personally, If I were planning to take this to Alaska, these would be my "Must Dos":

- Get all lights working properly.
- Have propane system checked for proper operation/leaks.
- Move battery out, unless it is AGM.
- Replace axle, add brakes.
- New smoke detector, CO detector.

Regarding converter, my Scamp doesn't have one, I just charge it when I've got shore power, lasts 4 or 5 days between charges with just lights, even longer now that I converted to LEDs. I have no furnace or water pump, so no additional battery drain there.

For gray water, there are many options for exterior tanks. Should be a secure connection for your drain hose, so not just into a bucket. Will then have to empty whatever container you choose into a sewer or toilet.

My understanding is that LOTS of flying stones from trucks on the drive to Alaska - should get a stone guard, definitely.
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Old 03-01-2016, 11:29 PM   #3
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Trailer: 2011 Scamp 13'
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I don't personally know much about modifications or re-doing anything structural or mechanical. Definitely fix things that affect safety and structure first. After doing so you can have great fun with decor. I love to do new decorative themes for my trips. See my previous postings by using the FGRV "Search" button, drop down to the bottom in the Google Search and enter the words "Gilda, and bedding, curtains, decor" and you will find lots of my previous posts.

Attached are samples of my "wine country" and "Southwest" decor. You could just order the curtains from Scamp. You'll notice that I kept the original Scamp curtains and added side panels and matching 16" pillows. The curtain panels and pillows require very simple sewing.
Attached Thumbnails
Lodi Wine Tasting July 2015 063.jpg   SCAMP Southwest Decor 2013 004.jpg  

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Old 03-02-2016, 06:12 AM   #4
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Axle- it's common for axles to last 20 years. Some folks get longer. Many would replace it just to get the brakes.

Converter- A converter serves two functions. It provides 12 volts in place of your battery when shore power is available and it recharges your battery. If you plan to camp for days where there is electrical hookups then a converter is nice to have. If you travel to different campgrounds daily, your tow vehicle will charge your battery going down the road. As an alternative, you might consider adding solar. I upgraded mine last year.
Time for new solar

Gray water- I use a 7 gallon plastic jug (brand= aquatainer) I bought at Walmart.

I would suggest switching out your lights to LED's as they are more efficient. Unless you use your furnace alot, one propane tank will do you. And having the battery on the tongue is far safer than inside the trailer. Good luck on you adventure, Raz
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Old 03-02-2016, 08:26 AM   #5
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Trailer: 2008 Scamp 13 S1
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Axle- agree with Raz. It may still be good. Brakes are always nice to have, though. Does the current axle have the square mounting flanges?

Battery- outside is my preference if it's a conventional lead-acid type. But if it's installed correctly (depending on the type of battery; lead-acid requires an enclosed battery box with a vent to the outside) you can leave it as is. Make sure it's in good condition. Since you'll be doing a lot of driving, make sure the charging line to the tow vehicle is set up and working correctly. Consider a device to prevent your vehicle battery from going dead. A 12V outlet is handy to keep electronics charged if you spend a day or two in camp.

Converter- if it ain't broke, don't fix it.

Propane- have it drop tested and add the appropriate detectors: smoke, CO, LP. If tongue weight isn't an issue and if you have both a propane fridge and a furnace, I'd be inclined to keep two LP tanks.

LEDs- toss up. In the summer we hardly use the lights in ours. Alaska has plenty of daylight in the summer!

Curtains- add blackout liners (Alaska in the summer!).

Grey tank- I'd want one that is fully sealed with a screw-on fitting and vent. Rules regarding grey water vary. The sealed system would be acceptable most places except a (very) few that require an onboard tank.

Gravel guard- yes!!

Carrie, some of this depends on how long you plan to keep the trailer. I recall at one time you were going to sell after the trip due to lack of storage. If that's still the plan, I would just do the basics to make it safe and comfortable. But if you now think you may keep it for a while, then things like LEDs, a newer and more reliable converter, a whole new axle,... make more sense.

BASICS: fresh water hose, water pressure regulator, extension cord, 15A adaptor, wheel chocks and leveling system (Lego-type blocks, BAL leveler, or equivalent), tool set, first aid kit.

An easy to set up screened shelter would be really nice because of the bugs. The Clam shelter is the one I'm thinking of. There's a small one and a large one.
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Old 03-02-2016, 09:43 AM   #6
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Where does one get the propane setup tested?
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Old 03-02-2016, 10:39 AM   #7
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I took mine to a local RV shop. I had them check out the furnace at the same time. Turned out the thermostat had been knocked senseless, so replaced that, too. About $120 for peace of mind and a working furnace.
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Old 03-02-2016, 11:40 AM   #8
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Name: Jim
Trailer: Scamp 16 Ft layout 6
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White Hanging storage space in your photo

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gilda View Post
I don't personally know much about modifications or re-doing anything structural or mechanical. Definitely fix things that affect safety and structure first. After doing so you can have great fun with decor. I love to do new decorative themes for my trips. See my previous postings by using the FGRV "Search" button, drop down to the bottom in the Google Search and enter the words "Gilda, and bedding, curtains, decor" and you will find lots of my previous posts.

Attached are samples of my "wine country" and "Southwest" decor. You could just order the curtains from Scamp. You'll notice that I kept the original Scamp curtains and added side panels and matching 16" pillows. The curtain panels and pillows require very simple sewing.
Gilda How is the white storage arrangement attached to the wall. Looks like something we could use in our Scamp. Tks Jim
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Old 03-02-2016, 02:29 PM   #9
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Trailer: '88 Scamp 16, layout 4
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Regarding the exterior lights, my tail lights were also fine only needing a good cleaning of the lenses. It was amazing how much brighter they were when you could actually see through the lenses!

My side marker lights were toast though. One was gone (broken) and the others could be made to work but the bodies (not the lenses) were crumbling at a touch. In fact they disintegrated when I drilled out the rivets to remove them. I replaced then with larger yellow and red LED side marker lights sourced from Amazon. The new lights had a screw spacing VERY close to the originals but did need a new hole drilled for the wires.

Installation was easy (if you can call standing on your head under a bunk four times easy), I bolted them on with stainless bolts and nylock nuts. I highly recommend this mod. But, if all of yours are not working it may be as simple as a bad connection somewhere, something you would have to fix anyway. Sometimes the electrical gremlins can be very annoying.
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Old 03-02-2016, 05:04 PM   #10
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Two additional thoughts. If you don't replace the axle do have the bearings inspected and greased. Cost is about $100 and any mechanic can do it. Also, check the tires. If over 5 years old, I would replace them. Don't forget the spare. It's a long road to Alaska. Happy trails, Raz
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Old 03-02-2016, 07:40 PM   #11
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Name: Marilyn
Trailer: 13 ft 2005 Scamp Deluxe; 2002 Subaru V6 Outback
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upgrades for Alaska trip

Definitely change out propane tank(s) for new one(s) at RV repair shop and have entire propane system checked out. My 2005 trailer's propane tank's valve blew out, spewing propane gas after I had filled the tank...you don't want this to happen on your trip.

I just bought an electric throw for campgrounds w. electricity, to save on propane, so I don't have to operate the heater...tip from another reader.

Install a digital thermostat and have the furnace and water heater serviced.

Check for roof leaks, cracks around windows. Reseal all roof connections around vents & windows. When it rains in Alaska, it REALLY rains.

Exciting trip - you'll love it.
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Old 03-03-2016, 09:26 AM   #12
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Name: Kate
Trailer: 1998 13' Scamp
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I just bought a 13' Scamp yesterday! Should I do a spring tune up? $300
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Old 03-03-2016, 10:04 AM   #13
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Kate, unless you know the for sure how well maintained (work order rec.) the trailer was, I'd go for the "Tune-Up" if it included packing the wheel bearings, adjusting the brakes, a checking the propane & electrical systems.
Congratulations on your find.
Dave & Paula
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Old 03-03-2016, 11:35 AM   #14
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Name: Kate
Trailer: 1998 13' Scamp
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Thanks so much you guys. I've found a retired guy who's going to help me get it all checked out and teach me everything i need to know for the future!
I'm so excited!!!
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