NEED ADVICE: Previous owner welded crack in frame - Page 3 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 03-03-2017, 11:05 PM   #29
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Name: Michael
Trailer: Trail Cruiser
Alberta
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I've seem folks spend more money on a project than it would have cost them to buy a new one and they still have an old, used unit.
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Old 03-03-2017, 11:31 PM   #30
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Name: Mike
Trailer: 1984 13' UHaul
Louisiana
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I've seem folks spend more money on a project than it would have cost them to buy a new one and they still have an old, used unit.
Maybe, but when you have it with upgrades and personalized and you did it, there's a lot of satisfaction.
I painted show cars for a living for almost a decade. Those cars were better than new. Some had ever nut and bolt replaced or replated.
Same with these little campers.
Plus, it keeps me at home and out of trouble
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Old 03-04-2017, 03:11 AM   #31
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Name: Mike
Trailer: 1982 Burro
Minnesota
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Originally Posted by Mike_L View Post
I've seem folks spend more money on a project than it would have cost them to buy a new one and they still have an old, used unit.
I agree, to an extent. It's a trap that many fall into, but if you don't overshoot your abilities, and keep costs down, you can have a very nice egg to enjoy, and come out just fine on the other end.
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Old 03-04-2017, 09:47 AM   #32
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Name: JD
Trailer: Scamp 16 Modified (BIGLY)
Florida
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The problem with repairing rusted frames is that it is very difficult to weld to them without blowing out the metal. These early frames were pretty thin to start with anyway.
I didn't replace my entire frame, but I did replace the front 1/4 - 1/3.
I added a lot of extra bracing and used thicker wall rectangular tubing and added a full two tubing sections across the front.
These frames are wont to crack in the left (driver's) side curve and where you can't easily see it in front of the door opening.
This is caused by the flexing of the frame under the door opening.
I think that all of these frames are prone to cracking in this area for the same reason.

If you look carefully you can see the effect of corrosion and cracking, Repaired?



Here is how I welded a second tube under the new frame back to the doubled stock frame.


This is what I did on the door side. The bracing and the tub was cracked through here.
This is the weak area which causes the cracking on the other side (In my opinion)


This pictures shows the extended frame to allow for adding the front middle bath.
You can see the reinforcement added at the bottom of the frame to the new carry through beams.

Of course this added a good bit of weight to the trailer and the added bracing tubes from the frame to the sides to carry the new 3/4 plywood that was bonded to the shell did too.
However now the shell is bonded to structural steel all the way around. Before the loads were basically in the four areas where the frame passed under the shell and the sides just basically floated and added no strength or stiffness.
Originally the OSB was just screwed to the top of the frame and was cantilevered over to the shell and the shell actually supported the sides of the floor.
Heavier, but maybe better?
Here is a picture of the new steel wheel wells and the added 1 1/2" square tube bracing.


Here is a good part of the reason for the extended frame. The bathroom pan sits in the new extended frame. You can see the added bracing for the area in front of the door.


All of the above is not necessarily to show how it can be done, but rather to show how one change leads to three more.
The modifications and repairs lead inevitably to more.
The more you look the more you find that needs to be fixed.
If you are not looking for a project then find a good trailer.
If it smells musty then carefully check the floor for rot and the frame for rust.
One thing leads to another............
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Old 03-04-2017, 10:34 AM   #33
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Trailer: Oliver Elite 2
Northern Nevada
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JD,

That is an excellent post and excellent work.

I really like the new frame and the steel wheel wells. It seems like the area near the front of the body, where the frame begins to narrow, is the maximum stress point on most trailers. Very important to check that area.

Are you going to do anything with the axle?

Thanks
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Old 03-04-2017, 01:03 PM   #34
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Name: JD
Trailer: Scamp 16 Modified (BIGLY)
Florida
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JD,

That is an excellent post and excellent work.

I really like the new frame and the steel wheel wells. It seems like the area near the front of the body, where the frame begins to narrow, is the maximum stress point on most trailers. Very important to check that area.

Are you going to do anything with the axle?

Thanks
I replaced the original dead axle with a Flexi-Ride with 10" brakes.
Since the only hubs available were 5 lug I bought 205 14 wheels and tires.
To get clearance for the new tires I installed the steel wheel wells.
The Flexi-ride lets me adjust the ride height to get the trailer level.
I may lower the trailer little when I get chance.
The larger wheels and tires also required cutting out the openings for installing and removing them as well.
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