New to me trailer - Fiberglass RV

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Old 10-07-2006, 04:18 PM   #1
Trailer: 1972 Burro
Posts: 66

I am now the proud owner of a 1972 13ft Burro. I have never owned a trailer before and unfortunately the manuals have been lost over the years. Can anyone recommend some basic reading especially and wheels axles and electrical systems. The little trailer is in good shape and I want to maintain it. Then the mods will begin.

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Old 10-07-2006, 04:40 PM   #2
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Name: Per
Trailer: 2000 Burro 17 ft Widebody towed by Touareg TDI
Posts: 867
Taylor: Welcome to the ranks of Burro owners! Several of the makers of appliances have websites where information is available. As far as wheels and axles are concerned I'd start by going to the Dexter website. Lots of good information. For electrical systems I have found the book "RV Electrical Systems" by Bill and Jan Moeller to be excellent (Ragged Mountain Press). It covers both the 12volt and the 120volt parts of the system and is very thorough, in my opinion. Have fun, and don't forget to go camping! (Sorry, I'm mostly talking to myself on this one.)

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Old 10-07-2006, 04:42 PM   #3
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Name: Brian
Trailer: Boler (B1700RGH) 1979
Posts: 5,000
There's a bunch of stuff in the Fiberglass RV Document Center (see the left side of this page), as well as links to other sites under Helpful-Links. In the Helpful-Links, in the Axle and Running Gear section, Dexter and Al-Ko appear. Both have useful information; in particular, Dexter posts a complete technical manual covering just about everything about axles, including brakes.
1979 Boler B1700RGH, pulled by 2004 Toyota Sienna LE 2WD
Information is good. Lack of information is not so good, but misinformation is much worse. Check facts, and apply common sense liberally.
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Old 10-08-2006, 06:25 AM   #4
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Name: Kevin
Trailer: 28' Bigfoot Silver Cloud
Woodstock, IL
Posts: 1,277
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Welcome as a new Burro owner! We found our "Lil Jennie" in May on eBay. She is a 13' Burro from 1978. We've spent the summer cleaning, fixing, updating, and camping! At the moment, we decided to ignore the 12 volt system and go strictly with 120 v., either through campground plug-ins or our generator. We also added a small air conditioner through the back wall, a shelf for a microwave, a 10" LCD DVD player under the kitchen cupboard, and a small dinette in the front (replacing the bench seat). We've taken it on short trips to Wisconsin and Minnesota and a 2-week trip to South Dakato and Yellowstone Park. Our tow vehicle is a 2003 VW Eurovan and the Burro pulls like a dream. (Our VW and Burro combination even won a first place trophy in the Special Interest category at a VW owners show this summer!). While the bed seems small at times (I'm 6', 230 lbs.), my wife and I are enjoying taking what she calls our "little motel room" on the road. Have fun!
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Old 10-08-2006, 10:15 AM   #5
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Name: Gina D.
Trailer: '77 Leocraft 17 & Former Burro owner and fan!
West Coast USA
Posts: 9,014
Hi Taylor, and welcome. The more Burros, the more.. Burros...

I have a 1980, and it was a total refurb from the guy I bought it from and into my ownership. The good news, not much goes wrong with them. The double shell with vertical seam makes the coach virtually maintenance free. No rivets to deal with which means: Less leak potential. It also makes it less likely to rattle apart with frequent use or on rough roads. Windows and roof vents are about the only place you need to worry about leaks.

Double shell makes it easy to add on electrical items, just pull thruogh the wall as you would at home! Is yours insulated? Mine is, and my mods were a bit tuffer with it, but still doable and clean.

Double shell also makes it impossible to re-arrange the furniture About the only radical mod you can do in this respect is the front dinnette mod. I did this with mine, and have no regrets. The goucho was removed and the seats used for dinette seats, a table put in place and the bed stays down 24/7. If you have kids, this may not be an option, but it sure makes life easier, and makes the inside look much more cozy and practicle.

The bad news: Check your frame, especially at the "A", where it bends in towards the tongue. Burros, among others, are notorious for splitting and breaking right where the bend begins. Mine has been repaired twice. The re-inforcement done by a very good welder with lots of experience makes me not ever have to worry about that again though.

With one as old as yours, I would crawl under there with a magnifying glass and a bright light before I tugged it anywhere. I might even just get it re enforced regardless to avoid the inevitable. Any little hairline split can turn into a ripping gap in minutes.

Take it to someone who knows trailers intimately and have it inspected. Ask to look underneath it with them when they have it on the rack so you can familiarize yourself with how the gas lines run and have a look at how the axle is mounted. Save info for future reference. I owned mine for a year before I was able to get a clear view, and it helped tremendously.

The rest is the same as all the other eggs, nothing special about the appliances etc. They pretty much are interchangable when it comes to these items.

Tires are easy. Any tire store can fix you up. I have 14 inch STs on mine. There is a lot of debate about STs vs. Passenger tires, but I went with STs, as they are only a pitance more and thats what comes recommended by most.

Wheels, are another story. Yours is no doubt a 4 bolt pattern, unless it was changed in it's past life. I got hub caps for my ugly old, but still good, ones at a hubcap store.

Have fun with it!
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Old 10-08-2006, 11:43 AM   #6
Trailer: 1972 Burro
Posts: 66
Thanks for all your help. I do not have insulation between the walls. I am already planing on doing the front goucho/ dinnette conversion. Sam, the dog, will just have to sleep on the floor.
Good thing I did n't know about the frame cracking before I towed it 200 miles home. I just looked and it seems in good shape. The only problem so far is the front window appears to have a small leak. It did rain aout 3 inches here yesterday a small leak is not that bad. Tire look new plenty of tread.
Good idea about takeing it to a trailer person for a good going over.
I still would like to take it for a shake down trip tp a place about 15 miles from here.
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Old 10-08-2006, 11:52 AM   #7
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Name: Gina D.
Trailer: '77 Leocraft 17 & Former Burro owner and fan!
West Coast USA
Posts: 9,014
Sam, the dog, will just have to sleep on the floor.
Ya think so, do ya?
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