Amerigo 16 Project Near Binghamton NY - Page 2 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 11-12-2017, 12:26 PM   #15
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Name: Steve
Trailer: Amerigo FG-16
North Carolina
Posts: 190
Bob,
I'm coming up on 3 years since buying my '72 amerigo & mine came with a good amount of paperwork from the original owner. I also have the Woodall's Trailer Travel review and I think that was just a promotional literature piece that amerigo reprinted from the actual magazine.

I had posted pics here in an older thread of all of the original invoices, dealer price list, owners manual, warranty & original brochures from amerigo but they were lost in the photobucket ransom extortion from earlier this year. I will try to dig up those pics & repost the in my original thread.

My camper was sold new to a woman in Bristol, IN which is where all FG-16's were built. The second owner also lived in Bristol on State Road 120 just a few miles from the original amerigo plant (which was also on State Road 120!) I have tried to find production #'s also but have come up with nothing. Judging from the few that remain today it couldn't have been very many.
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Old 11-12-2017, 04:48 PM   #16
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Name: Kathleen
Trailer: Amerigo FG-16 1973 "Peanut"
Washington
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Amerigos were started by a fellow named Gardner in 1970. He was associated with KOA campgrounds. The first model would not have been out before 1970/1971; they only made the FG-16 trailers until 1975-1976 at the latest. Then they made other types of campers like slide-ins to go on trucks. All of the FG-16's were the same SIZE as yours and ours, 16' from tongue to tail with the same basic molded 13' shell. Originally from the factory they only offered a porta-potty, but many intermediaries added permanent toilets, cutting through the floor in the front closet/niche in such a way that it was never sealed properly; in 40 years a lot of them have rotted areas around those make-shift toilet holes.

Originally, they had no holding tanks. The permanent toilets required a black tank (which were often some shade of blue) and were temporary, just set loose under the trailer with a loose drain line running into it while parked. To travel, the loose tank had to be picked up manually and brought along with the cap screwed shut. The kitchen sink had no holding tank either, but just drained out onto the ground beneath or beside the trailer. That was considered OK back then.

The front niche never had a sink, as it was a closet, not a bathroom. The floor area there is smaller than it seems. Good for storing a port-a-potty. The niche came with a rather nice clothes rod, and the molded ceiling (attached to be permanent) is a beauty.

This information is compiled from a number of posts by Bob Miller, all scattered throughout the archives of FGRV, findable but not easily. Also from original sales brochure the PO had kept with the trailer. We are at LEAST the 3rd owners and I am guessing there were others.

If you have the "funny" wheels/rims shown below, they are "Dexstar" and were probably mounted originally on a torsion axle, the kind that usually wear out in 10-20 years.

If you want to spend some time researching, go up to the search section above and use the lower search blank to fill in your words of interest.

I never saw that Bob Mller mentioned how many total FG-16 amerigos were produced; he was quite the historian for these and the Sunrader trailers and others. Since amerigos are quite rare, I can only assume not many were made; and 43+ years ago. They had some of the largest window areas of any fiberglass trailers, which I think made them somewhat more vulnerable. But low production can easily account for their rarity. I see some for sale off and on...but have not yet encountered one in person other than ours.

I was going to name ours after the original Star Trek Shuttlecraft, but Leonie Belcher here on FGRV had already chosen that name, and we ended up naming ours "Peanut" -- one shell with two nuts in it.

BEST
Kai
Attached Thumbnails
Peanut 10 2015 to 6 2016 052.JPG   Peanut 8 2016 E.jpg  

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Old 11-12-2017, 06:03 PM   #17
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Name: Bob
Trailer: Amerigo FG-16
New York
Posts: 5
Amerigo production numbers?

Thanks all - for the additional info on the amerigo. Mine does have the funny wheels as shown on Kai's pictures. New tires and wheel bearings. As part of the purchase deal, I asked the seller to deliver from Endwell (across the river) to my property prior to closing the deal. He got it there safe and sound, so I figured it was still tow-able. Mine still has the original clothes hanger bar in the closet. The molded fiberglass inner roof/ceiling is an attractive design and I assume adds a bit to the trailers rigidity. Mine is in very good condition. I've recently installed two temporary 2 x 4 roof supports to help against potential snow load. It's surprising there are no production numbers available for these campers. Their rarity has me feeling guilty about letting it sit outside exposed to the winter weather. But I'm a car guy, and my garages are already filled with vehicles. Kai - was yours the one painted a maroon color? Very nice.

Bob
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Old 11-13-2017, 09:14 AM   #18
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Name: Kathleen
Trailer: Amerigo FG-16 1973 "Peanut"
Washington
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Hi, Bob in Vestal,

Yours does sound remarkably whole...I agree about the roof supports; until we got the upright walls (including galley supports) in, the roof gradually sagged so we propped it up with flat pieces of plywood and a vertical 2 x 4 that Paul tapped in gently over a few days to ease the ceiling/roof back to a proper position.

Wonder if you still have the wooden bars inside your door...many don't. I don't know what they were intended for originally. Magazines?

Yes, Peanut was once dark. It was "root beer brown" with gold flecks.
We didn't love the brown, but would have left it except fiberglass repairs soon showed us there was no way to avoid a lot of patches, so we decided to paint it after all.

We've had the debate about tarping, fitted cover, carport roof, etc. with input from many people, both opinions--cover, don't cover. One made the point that what you save in sun damage, you lose in a cover "flapping" constantly and wearing down the outside from friction, no matter how tightly you snug it up. We leave ours uncovered in the driveway and are prepared to repaint one day. As they say, once painted, always painted. And--what you save in covering it from rain, you lose in possible interior condensation. Frequent checking when stored is a good idea. At least once a month? Paul's out there so often we don't have to schedule checks.

We don't feel you're being irresponsible to leave yours outside. Do get some kind of tire covers, though, if you want the rubber to last longer. And be sure to jack it up so some of the weight is off the tires. some just stand plywood in front of the tires...that'll do.


Since Paul and I use Peanut several times a week as a privacy and reading, area, we love having it handy in the driveway.




BEST
Kai
Attached Thumbnails
Peanut 10 2015 to 6 2016 022.JPG   1A 1 electronic tongue jack meant we couldn't open the tailgate of our TV van.jpg  

1A 2 In our driveway October 2015.jpg   Peanut 10 2015 to 6 2016 016.JPG  

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Old 11-13-2017, 09:27 AM   #19
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Name: Steve
Trailer: Amerigo FG-16
North Carolina
Posts: 190
Bob, Here is some of the paperwork I have for the FG-16.

Along with the original purchase invoice I have the dealers price list on all of the options available in '72. Some of the more common options were priced as follows: 4 cu. ft gas/electric refrigerator w/auto defrost $252.00, 10,000btu furnace $98.00, overhead bunk bed $78.00, recirculating toilet (aka Thetford) $210.00, rear overhead cabinets $34.00.

2 different floor plans were available. The first had a front dinette that could convert to a single bed along with the rear gaucho that would convert to a double bed. This model had the large front window (same size as the side windows) and the rear cargo access door.

The second had a rear dinette that could convert to a double bed along with the front L shaped couch that would convert to a single bed. This layout has the smaller front window and has no rear cargo door. Many of this style will also have a rear spare tire mount. Both layouts had the refrigerator, stove/oven and sink located in the center of the camper over the axle.

Although the brochure lists a torsion axle as standard, my FG-16 has a leaf spring set up on it and it was not billed out on the invoice as an option. I've looked at mine very closely and it is definitely a factory installation, not a later conversion and every other FG-16 I've seen here or on other sites has the typical leaf spring suspension. I believe there was a change made after the brochures were printed & amerigo/Stewart Garner went with the traditional leaf spring set up. It may have been a supplier problem w/the torsion axle or even a cost saving move.....I guess we may never know for certain.

Overall I think the amerigo has a pretty nice layout in both floor plans. As you mentioned the quality in construction of most campers seems to be lacking but keep in mind weight is one of the bigger concerns.....it's not hard to add several hundred lbs of excess material.

All the best with your project & looking forward to seeing some pics as it progresses!
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Old 11-13-2017, 09:39 AM   #20
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Name: bob
Trailer: Was A-Liner now 13f Scamp
Missouri
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neat looking

that trailer is very nice looking I like the design of it

bob
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Old 11-13-2017, 10:34 AM   #21
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Name: Kathleen
Trailer: Amerigo FG-16 1973 "Peanut"
Washington
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SteveV, thanks for the info! I hope you don't mind if I copy that and add it to my notebook. It helps clear up our axle, which is a regular leaf spring, and also seems original.

Also--that "recirculating toilet" -- was that a permanent mount, do you think, or a port-a-potty?

Imagine an upper bunk bed for $78!

Kai
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Old 11-13-2017, 10:45 AM   #22
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Name: Kathleen
Trailer: Amerigo FG-16 1973 "Peanut"
Washington
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Hi,

I was told they never installed toilets originally--but SteveV, you prove me wrong.

A Thedford "recirculating toilet" is still being sold and can be seen online...this was designed, apparently, to be used with just a "slinky" or with a portable holding tank and DID have the hole in the floor. No wonder so many have that hole. It WAS fron the manufacturer.

Thanks!


From the Thetford Corporation website:


Electra Magic Toilets - Thetford Corporation

Parts
Manuals
Find a Dealer

For use in boats, RVs, buses and other land-based and marine applications
Recirculating toilet uses very little water Ideal for those who don't have a holding tank

Convenient push-button flushing
Operates on 12- or 24-volt hookup
Large, contoured seat offers full-size comfort
Easy-to-read Level Indicator

Caution: Do not use stiff brushes or homemade products to clean or lubricate the valve and seal, as these will damage the seals and surfaces, causing odors to escape from holding tanks. Thetford recommends using Aqua-Clean and toilet seal lubricants.

Product SKUs: 24345, 34344


There's a whole PDF brochure you can look at; it even shows the hole plan, and it explains some of the layout of the rest of the trailer...we found it very elegant already, and this makes me admire it more. So much planning went into these!

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Kai
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Old 11-13-2017, 12:29 PM   #23
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Name: Steve
Trailer: Amerigo FG-16
North Carolina
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Kai,
Since the recirculating toilet is on their option list, brochures as well as my original invoice I have to believe it was installed when it was built.
Most FG-16's I've seen pics up have the same toilet installed, the only difference being the front dinette floor plans had the big front window/small closet so the toilet was mounted front to back. The rear dinette floor plan had a small front window/larger closet so they mounted the toilet sideways.

Mine did have the bunk bed in the rear but we chose not to put it back in. We don't have any kids so it wouldn't be useful to us although it did make a nice full width shelf!. I thought the rear upper cabinets were a deal @ $34.00!

I agree, the amerigo designers did put some good thought and features into such a small camper. We kept the original layout with our restoration and are also pleased with how it came out.
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Old 11-13-2017, 07:14 PM   #24
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Name: Samantha
Trailer: Amerigo
Vermont
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We have a 73 and it has the same Thetford Electra Magic toilet. We have not reinstalled it yet, we wanted to get camping last summer. Its our first project for next spring!
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Old 11-14-2017, 08:09 AM   #25
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Name: Kathleen
Trailer: Amerigo FG-16 1973 "Peanut"
Washington
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Those rear upper cabinets are well worth the $34!

Now I wonder if ours really IS a '73, since the floor plan options for '72 include our original layout.

Well, you've added a bunch to my understanding of the FG-16 history. Thanks!

BEST
Kai
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