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Old 07-16-2019, 01:03 AM   #21
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Name: Kelly
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TucsonAZ View Post
. I can't for the life of me understand taking what could be a durable, easy to clean surface and adding adhesive and fabric to it and have it cost me more to boot.
The reason you can't understand why there is material on the interior of the walls is because you don't understand what the interior surface of a molded fiberglass shell actually looks like. You have unfortunately mistakenly assumed they are made with the same quality of surface on both the interior as well as the exterior.

The reality is that it is not smooth on the interior surface, it has a very rough surface that has a lot of loose ends of glass strands. It is only the outside, gel coat surface that is smooth and easy to clean. The way these shells are fabricated is they first spray into the mold the colored gel coat layer then over that they spray a mixture of resin with rough chopped fibers, one worker will be spraying on the chop and another person is following behind with a roller to pack it down to a more compressed layer. However it does not have a smooth glossy surface even after the rolling, it is still quite rough with lots of tiny fibers poking up. There is no third layer, smooth and washable surface that get applied on the interior surface.

That is why there is a layer of material attached to the interior of the walls. It would be unliveable if they did not attach something to the interior surfaces to cover over that rough and dangerous to touch surface. It is dangerous because the glass fibers are sharp and can penetrate your skin or get on your hands and into your eyes or you could breath them in.

However there are a few double hulled fiberglass trailers where there is a second hull placed inside of the first. The gel coated surface on the second hull does face to the interior. Sorry but I don't know which brands are made with a double hull.
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Old 07-16-2019, 02:49 AM   #22
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Name: Adam
Trailer: 2014 Lil Snoozy
Arizona
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I have totally misunderstood, I knew this is how they were made however I didn't know that it wouldn't be possible to spray another gel coat on the interior. Maybe this can't be done for reasons related to curing or whatever but I just assumed it was to save a few bucks and opting for a far inferior (to me) carpeted walls which sadly leaves these with a feeling of being stuck in the 70s.
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Old 07-16-2019, 06:56 AM   #23
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Uncarpeted Brands of these little Eggs?

Vintage double-hull makes:
Burro (three sizes: 13’, 14’ wide body, 17’ wide body),
U-Haul (originally built as rentals, two sizes: 13’ and 16’- rare)
Cloud, maybe??

Modern double-hull makes:
Oliver (19.5’ and 23.5’, high end, still in production)
EggCamper (17’, most are all-electric, currently out of production but may be coming back)
Parkliner (only made a 16’ double-hull version one year- 2018- before ceasing production, older 15’ units are single hull)
Happier Camper (13’ only, larger one may be in the works)

The Burro 17’ might be a good one to look for. They’re uncommon, but not exactly rare. Some have a wet bath. Being vintage, most need some work.

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Molded fiberglass can only have smooth gelcoat on one side, the side against the mold. They spray a thin layer of tinted resin in the mold first as the cosmetic gelcoat layer, then a thicker layer of glass-impregnated resin as the structural layer.

Go to Home Depot and look at the back side of a fiberglass shower unit to get an idea how fiberglass looks out of the mold. You can also go to Scamp’s website, where you’ll find a promotional video that includes a segment showing how they’re made (starts around 6:30 IIRC).

In theory you could sand off exposed glass fibers and paint or even gel coat the back side of the fiberglass shell, but it would then be thin and uninsulated as well as lumpy textured due to the glass fibers. It needs a layer of something to prevent condensation and provide a thermal and sound barrier. Escape add closed cell foam with a smooth vinyl top layer. Casita adds foam-backed carpet. Scamp adds a sandwich of marine headliner over foil bubble wrap.

Many vintage single hull units have Ensolite as the shell lining, closed cell foam with a textured vinyl top layer, similar to Escape. There are a few in the 16-17’ size range. Could be something else to look for.

There are others that build out the interior conventionally with wood paneling and cabinetry. Only works if the shell is molded in a boxy shape. Bigfoot is the best-known example.

Double hull construction, on the other hand, molds the whole interior in large pieces that fit inside the outer shell. The gel coat side faces inward like a shower enclosure. Even then, many have a gap across the ceiling that is filled with... guess what?...carpet. Some have a layer of insulation between inner and outer shells, but not all. It is more expensive to build and complicates repair and renovation, because you can’t take out the cabinetry.

Best wishes as you research!
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Old 07-16-2019, 08:22 AM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TucsonAZ View Post
I guess no begins the process of finding, Scamp and Casita are fairly common in my area but I'm not sure I've ever seen an Oliver, Lil Snoozy, Escape, Big Foot and so on in Southern Arizona.



I'm sure the liner/carpeting is fine but it reminds me of those houses in many Cities with carpeting in the bedrooms but under the carpeting is amazing hardwood flooring. I can't for the life of me understand taking what could be a durable, easy to clean surface and adding adhesive and fabric to it and have it cost me more to boot. In Arizona with the heat it's just one more thing to go wrong, dry rot, sag, collect dust and so on.


I will certainly look hard for some of the other brands, if I'm going to be dropping $12k+ on something like this (that's entry level diesel pusher range in Arizona) I want it to be a good match for me.
While it is a bit of a wait, you can see all of these & more at the Quartzsite Fiberglass Trailer Rally at Dome Rock in early February.
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Old 07-16-2019, 08:45 AM   #25
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Name: Kathleen (Kai: ai as in wait)
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And then there are the Amerigos, with an inner hull of 1/4" plywood. No rat fur, no carpet, and sometimes insulation between and sometimes using the "dead air" principle for insulation.


The single-hull trailers are usually lighter than the double-hulls. Our Amerigo FG-16 weighed 2800 pounds fully loaded for a 28-day trip. Well under the 3600 our TV, a Dodge Grand Caravan, can tow.


I really, really like the inner walls, as putting things up in there is like a house, you don't poke through the hull to hang things up. Though you do have to be aware of how much space you have and not use too long a screw.


Amerigos are rare. I wonder how many were made, and what the effect has been of having so many large windows...weakened them, or something. As in WA/OR we have yet to see another one in person. They originated mostly in Indiana...did they mostly just not get this far, or have they mostly disintegrated?


Still our 1973 "Peanut" is in good shape now, after Paul's hard work.


TusconAZ: you may know the old saying for buying things:


You can have any two:
Fast
Great quality
Cheap
Close


It's a rare purchase indeed that gives you all four or even three, OR the supposed two. Sometimes you only get one. Depending on how much you want to manifest something, you might end up with the item but none of those desirable things above. We opted for FAST. Peanut was in BAD shape and was not cheap. I added"close" to the list for FGRVs. Peanut wasn't close, either.


But we GOT it, and after 9 months of 8-10 hours a day work, Paul had Peanut in good, camping shape. We made decisions both determined by the trailer itself (ceiling molded to solidly accept upright walls in only a few places...or example) and by our camping habits and needs.


If you don't want to do extensive work, you'll probably pay more and drive further and wait longer.

If we hadn't gotten Peanut when and where we did, we had a chance about 18 months later to get one from a seller on FGRV...in what looked like original condition...at a reasonable price...but with these eggs, you just can't predict what and when you'll come across one.

I agree very much with DonnaD above, the interior layout is awfully important.


Good luck.
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Old 07-16-2019, 09:16 AM   #26
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This has been a very interesting and informative thread!

Jon in AZ, I am, as usual, impressed by your knowledge!

Kai, I never heard that old saying for buying things--it sounds right on!

TucsonAZ, I wish you luck in your search! You've come to the right place for a fiberglass education, as you now know, and it will just take some patience for the right trailer to come along. Also, realize that what seems right for you now may not be right for you in the future, as your needs change. It's okay to buy a trailer and then resell it in a few years--and as fiberglass trailers hold their value, you probably won't be out much.
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Old 07-16-2019, 09:18 AM   #27
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Hi, Lisa M, two thumbs up to you, thanks for the kind comments. You give good encouragement!

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Old 07-16-2019, 11:27 AM   #28
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If you don't want to do a lot of work, get a late model unit, say 2010 or newer, that has been stored indoors, or get one that someone has carefully restored. The restored units are relatively rare. People tend to use items until something breaks. Preventive or routine maintenance is rare on RVs.

I recently was camping in Colorado with my 2013 Escape, and another camper in a 2014 Escape wanted to know how I polished the trailer. I asked him how he stored his unit at home (it obviously was weathered). His answer, "it sits outside". I told him I have never polished my Escape, but it is always stored inside.

Scamp does not make a 17 footer. I don't consider a Scamp to be lower in quality than most other brands. One unique aspect of Scamp is you can buy a brand new unit that is very basic (very basic = lighter in weight). So lightly used one could be very basic, or could have a lot of nice options, or anywhere in between. Almost every option adds weight. Olivers are pretty unique in design, price, weight, 4 season, double wall, etc.
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Old 07-16-2019, 07:22 PM   #29
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also, a single layer of fiberglass with no insulation would be quite bright and hot inside when parked in the sun. I need to be able to sleep until 11 or noon when I've pulled an all nighter at a star party, and since shade == night sky blockage, there's typically zero shade where we're camping at a star party, except what you bring with you.

even our casita, the carpet lining only partially darkened it, it still got pretty warm. the double layer of reflectix plus layer of neopreme foam plus inner vinyl headliner of our Escape stays totally dark inside even in direct sunlight, and that keeps things quite a bit cooler.
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Old 07-16-2019, 10:07 PM   #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John in Santa Cruz View Post
also, a single layer of fiberglass with no insulation would be quite bright and hot inside when parked in the sun. I need to be able to sleep until 11 or noon when I've pulled an all nighter at a star party, and since shade == night sky blockage, there's typically zero shade where we're camping at a star party, except what you bring with you.

even our casita, the carpet lining only partially darkened it, it still got pretty warm. the double layer of reflectix plus layer of neopreme foam plus inner vinyl headliner of our Escape stays totally dark inside even in direct sunlight, and that keeps things quite a bit cooler.

Never been to a star party, had my NSGPS 11" set up last Saturday though, was a great night for the 35mm Pan and the moon but had some cloud cover so that was about it for me. I also often set up a 25" Obsession but that's far more effort than the SCT so only really of value to me if I'm in darker areas.



Anyway, good info about the light, I prefer as dark as possible for sure so that would play into things. I'm starting to think I really really rather have something more 4 seasons so I will look into that a little further.



Thank you all for the great responses and information. I'm happy there are as many options as there are even if some of them are fairly uncommon or costly. There's at least still a huge range of options to choose from.
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Old 07-17-2019, 07:03 AM   #31
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Uncarpeted Brands of these little Eggs?

“Four seasons” generally means heavy. Most garden variety lightweight molded trailers are good well into the shoulder seasons, and can be used dry below freezing.

However, if you plan to seek out winter recreation and want to have the plumbing working for hot showers after a day of snow-play, a true 4-season unit is nice. The extra insulation and thermal windows make them more comfortable (and efficient) in hot weather, too.

Bigfoot makes nice 4-season molded trailers. Look for 2006 and newer 2500-series units. The smallest is a 17.5’ model, available in several configurations. That’s not to be confused with older 17’ 3-season units. Bigfoots are finished inside more like a conventional RV- lots of wood- but with excellent build quality. Figure close to 5000# GVW for the 17.5’ with an 8’ wide, boxy profile.
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Old 07-20-2019, 12:24 PM   #32
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Name: Herb-in-FL
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Chemical sensitivities - bare is better.

Quote:
Originally Posted by TucsonAZ View Post
Well, I'm new to the forum and what an adventure it's been getting here. I've been traveling for years in all sorts of things from motorhomes to step vans. I'm also currently working on a stealthy enclosed aluminum enclosed trailer build but I have more ideas than time or energy so it's taking longer than I would like. As such I need something for travel that's slightly more ready to go.



As a loather of carpeting the very last thing I would ever want is to have it on my walls (it's a bad enough idea for a floor). Is there anything other than the Lil Snoozy (hard to find in Arizona) that would fit my needs? I love the Snoozy having real wood interiors but as mentioned finding one isn't easy.



I'm super super sensitive to chemicals which is what has led me down this fiberglass path. So I would like something that doesn't hold odors and ideally doesn't have things that off gas a ton like particle board and carpeting covering the walls.



Thanks in advance for your help, insights, ideas.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Adam:

In attempting to address your original concern about chemicals,
I have often preferred pre-owned vehicles since with age, much
of the outgassing of solvents has already taken place. ::

(Think that "new car smell" you used to get from the
solvent formerly used to ensure that upholstery and
padding was nicely soft and supple) ::

Simply buying used, might solve a number of problems if
it is mostly solvent, that causes problems for you. ::

The only problem buying used, is when people attempt to hide
cooking, pet or people smells by adding more chemicals while
cleaning. ::

You might look into a small, air purifier with activated charcoal/cartridge filters.
They can pull a lot of additional chemicals and smells out of
the air, without the use of ionization or UV light. ::

Herb
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Old 07-20-2019, 01:39 PM   #33
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Adam: if you ever feel the need to paint inside your trailer, whatever you find, I'd try to use fresh, new latex paint, lots of fresh air.


The above suggestion about a little air filter would be reasonable. We like our larger unit we keep at home, particularly for the wildfire season year when the air can be eaten with a fork. It might be very helpful if you're camping near someone's campfire...yours or others.


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Old 07-20-2019, 03:00 PM   #34
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Name: Diane
Trailer: 2015 Lil Snoozy
Delaware
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Quote:
Originally Posted by k corbin View Post
The reason you can't understand why there is material on the interior of the walls is because you don't understand what the interior surface of a molded fiberglass shell actually looks like. You have unfortunately mistakenly assumed they are made with the same quality of surface on both the interior as well as the exterior.

The reality is that it is not smooth on the interior surface, it has a very rough surface that has a lot of loose ends of glass strands. It is only the outside, gel coat surface that is smooth and easy to clean. The way these shells are fabricated is they first spray into the mold the colored gel coat layer then over that they spray a mixture of resin with rough chopped fibers, one worker will be spraying on the chop and another person is following behind with a roller to pack it down to a more compressed layer. However it does not have a smooth glossy surface even after the rolling, it is still quite rough with lots of tiny fibers poking up. There is no third layer, smooth and washable surface that get applied on the interior surface.

That is why there is a layer of material attached to the interior of the walls. It would be unliveable if they did not attach something to the interior surfaces to cover over that rough and dangerous to touch surface. It is dangerous because the glass fibers are sharp and can penetrate your skin or get on your hands and into your eyes or you could breath them in.

However there are a few double hulled fiberglass trailers where there is a second hull placed inside of the first. The gel coated surface on the second hull does face to the interior. Sorry but I don't know which brands are made with a double hull.

My 2015 Lil Snoozy interior does not shine but, rather, has a mat finish that is relatively smooth. Other years may have more lumps and bumps but there is no glass filament poking through. It is a single hull.
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Old 07-20-2019, 06:40 PM   #35
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Name: Adam
Trailer: 2014 Lil Snoozy
Arizona
Posts: 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by Herb-in-FL View Post
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Adam:

In attempting to address your original concern about chemicals,
I have often preferred pre-owned vehicles since with age, much
of the outgassing of solvents has already taken place. ::

(Think that "new car smell" you used to get from the
solvent formerly used to ensure that upholstery and
padding was nicely soft and supple) ::

Simply buying used, might solve a number of problems if
it is mostly solvent, that causes problems for you. ::

The only problem buying used, is when people attempt to hide
cooking, pet or people smells by adding more chemicals while
cleaning. ::

You might look into a small, air purifier with activated charcoal/cartridge filters.
They can pull a lot of additional chemicals and smells out of
the air, without the use of ionization or UV light. ::

Herb

Thank you for the suggestions. I'm actually super well versed in this department, I've been pretty sensitive to chemicals for many many years so adjusting to that is something I'm fairly proficient at.


I actually run full on carbon scrubbers in my home with 20+ pounds of activated charcoal so that is a great suggestion and they do work very very well.



I'm looking for the fiberglass units because I've found that many of the Jayco and so on from the 10 or so year old range are full of leaks and other issues, lower quality products and either still have a manufacturing smell or a rot/mildew smell.



Ozone is also an option but comes with some oxidization issues as I'm sure you know.



Anyway, I will find the right unit, I just need to remind myself it may take me a while but it will happen.






Quote:
Originally Posted by Kai in Seattle View Post
Adam: if you ever feel the need to paint inside your trailer, whatever you find, I'd try to use fresh, new latex paint, lots of fresh air.


The above suggestion about a little air filter would be reasonable. We like our larger unit we keep at home, particularly for the wildfire season year when the air can be eaten with a fork. It might be very helpful if you're camping near someone's campfire...yours or others.


BEST

"K"

Do you mean latex to seal in the chemicals behind? There are great clay and only natural paints as well. The issues as I've hear it is if you paint you run the risk of loosening the glue holding the wallpaper on and causing issues from that. Maybe just lighter coats on a hooter day would address that.
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Old 07-21-2019, 08:58 PM   #36
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i have a 2014 Bigfoot 17.5 and live in Tucson. You are welcome to stop by to check it out (I'm the west side near Old Tucson). However, the ceiling of my trailer is covered with a carpet-like material similar to the wall covering in my previous Casita.

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Old 07-23-2019, 10:32 PM   #37
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Name: Kelly
Trailer: Trails West
Oregon
Posts: 2,960
There is a brand new fiberglass trailer that is being made to an original design using the vintage molds. It does not have a carpeted interior, it has a wood paneled interior on the walls and ceilings.


Custom Orders — Relic Custom Trailers | Build Your Dream Vintage Trailer
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Old 07-24-2019, 04:57 AM   #38
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Name: Sandra
Trailer: 2006 EggCamper #35
Florida
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Our seller did a great job of photographing this new to us EggCamper.While sold the listing can be viewed here.


https://www.fiberglassclassifieds.com/2006-eggcamper-eggcamper-387


From descriptions in this thread I would say it is dual hulled, mostly smooth white interior. The ceiling panels cover the center seam, and are covered in fabric. I'm sure they could be altered, replaced with panels of wood or other materials.
The company is in Michigan, going back into production. Likely hard to find used - especially out West.


All the best in your search. If you have funds - both a Nest from Airstream, or something from Oliver, could be choices.


Sandy



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Old 07-24-2019, 12:09 PM   #39
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Name: Kathleen (Kai: ai as in wait)
Trailer: Amerigo FG-16 1973 "Peanut"
Greater Seattle Metropolitan Area, Washington
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Hi, clearly, you know a lot more about painting than I do for chemical issues! I'm glad.

Our trailer has wood paneling inside as an inner hull. We sealed it with a water-based sealer, but one day we may paint it white. At that time, I'll look at the clay-based and natural paints, now that you've mentioned them, and give it a good think.

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Old 07-24-2019, 12:18 PM   #40
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Name: Diane
Trailer: 2015 Lil Snoozy
Delaware
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bernese Bunch View Post
My 2015 Lil Snoozy interior does not shine but, rather, has a mat finish that is relatively smooth. Other years may have more lumps and bumps but there is no glass filament poking through. It is a single hull.
I was over at my Lil Snoozy doing some work and took some photos of the interior walls. They are quite smooth.
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