Hi I'm new - 1983 Burro (almost) - Fiberglass RV


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Old 01-31-2017, 08:17 AM   #1
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Name: Shelby
Trailer: Burro
Michigan
Posts: 10
Hi I'm new - 1983 Burro (almost)

Good morning all! Newbie here.

My husband and I are taking a road trip to check out a 1983 13' Burro. I'm super excited for the possibility to own one of these and make it my own.

I've seen a lot of pictures from the owner and asked a bunch of questions. Are there any problem areas in Burros that I should look into besides the basic leaks, wood rot, etc.?

Any help from the experienced would be appreciated.

Thank you!!
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Old 01-31-2017, 10:56 AM   #2
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Name: Jim
Trailer: Burro
California
Posts: 25
Burro

Good luck checking out your new Burro. I bought a 1983 Burro about 3 months ago and I've been fixing it up. I love it.

From my limited experience the floor can be rotted out anywhere, but the most likely area will likely be inside the wheel wells (check plywood behind and along the tires), and in my case by the front door. If worse comes to worse you can replace the wood floor -- I just replaced some of the plywood near the door in mine since the rest was OK. The 1983 windows aren't the best but with a little butly tape you can take them out and reseal them pretty easily.

The frame will be rusted to some degree but check to be sure all the welds are solid (not cracked). The torsion axle (suspension system) may need replacements (check if the trailer is sagging) - mine was OK even though it was 1983. If you have to replace the axle it'll cost about $500.

If the light and electric components don't work they are easily fixable. I rewired everything, put in LED lights (outside and inside), a new 12V converter and solar.

Mine looked like hell when I bought it but after a little work it looks great. So look past ugly features (e.g. cabinets, ceiling cover, floor covering, cushions) because those are all easily fixable.

Best of luck.
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Old 01-31-2017, 11:28 AM   #3
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Name: Shelby
Trailer: Burro
Michigan
Posts: 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by jgilardi View Post
Good luck checking out your new Burro. I bought a 1983 Burro about 3 months ago and I've been fixing it up. I love it.

From my limited experience the floor can be rotted out anywhere, but the most likely area will likely be inside the wheel wells (check plywood behind and along the tires), and in my case by the front door. If worse comes to worse you can replace the wood floor -- I just replaced some of the plywood near the door in mine since the rest was OK. The 1983 windows aren't the best but with a little butly tape you can take them out and reseal them pretty easily.

The frame will be rusted to some degree but check to be sure all the welds are solid (not cracked). The torsion axle (suspension system) may need replacements (check if the trailer is sagging) - mine was OK even though it was 1983. If you have to replace the axle it'll cost about $500.

If the light and electric components don't work they are easily fixable. I rewired everything, put in LED lights (outside and inside), a new 12V converter and solar.

Mine looked like hell when I bought it but after a little work it looks great. So look past ugly features (e.g. cabinets, ceiling cover, floor covering, cushions) because those are all easily fixable.

Best of luck.


Thank you! I appreciate the information.
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Old 01-31-2017, 03:37 PM   #4
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Name: Kevin
Trailer: 28' Bigfoot Silver Cloud
Oak Park, IL
Posts: 1,111
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As noted, almost everything on these can be fixed. However, take a close look where the trailer tongue meets the frame. If it is severely rusted (rusted through in large holes) or broken/split there, it can be a major repair and dangerous to tow home. That doesn't happen often, but we've had a few small trailer owners find the tongue connection point to be a problem.

I would also watch for a badly sagging door that won't close or latch. This can indicate broken door hinges or cracked fiberglass where the hinges attach. Again, it's fixable, but it takes a lot of work. (A small bit of sag or gap is not a problem if it works OK. Weatherstripping can fill a gap.)
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Old 01-31-2017, 06:51 PM   #5
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Name: Duane
Trailer: 1978 Burro
Michigan
Posts: 82
Burro frame

Quote:
Originally Posted by shelby_joy View Post
Good morning all! Newbie here.

My husband and I are taking a road trip to check out a 1983 13' Burro. I'm super excited for the possibility to own one of these and make it my own.

I've seen a lot of pictures from the owner and asked a bunch of questions. Are there any problem areas in Burros that I should look into besides the basic leaks, wood rot, etc.?

Any help from the experienced would be appreciated.

Thank you!!
Don't want to scare you but I found two large cracks halfway thru the 3" vertical section of the frame right near where the frame curve is formed as the frame goes under the shell on both sides. Both cracks were on the inside. They were not noticeable until I sandblasted in the corners.

It was pretty evident that I had a problem since the frame was "sunk" into the shell about 1" on both sides. That seems to be the weak spot in the frames.

Wish I took photos of the cracks before I repaired the frame.

I have a 1978 Burro and really like it. Great fun project and will take me years to get it all done. Good luck and have fun!!
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