Repair and Maintenance When You're Too Far from Minnesota? - Fiberglass RV


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Old 06-04-2018, 11:32 PM   #1
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Name: Sarah
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Repair and Maintenance When You're Too Far from Minnesota?

Hello,
I am new here. My family is looking for a lightweight fiberglass trailer that we can tow with our Outback, and we're seriously considering the Scamp 13', which seems like the best bet for meeting our towing needs. My question is for those who live too far away from Minnesota to realistically take the trailer to Backus for repair or maintenance. Where do you take your trailer? We are in Tucson, Az.

We're not retirement age, and our kids are still in school, so we can't leave for a week when we need to get a trailer repaired. How does the warranty work when you're not able to take it back to the factory for repair?
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Old 06-05-2018, 12:17 AM   #2
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Warranty repair can be done at any RV repair shop. Just have them call Scamp before doing any work.

Most repairs are minor. I've had mine for 12 years and it's never made the trip back to Backus. Buy your Scamp and relax and go camping.
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Old 06-05-2018, 04:38 AM   #3
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Byron you might want to touch base with Little House Customs/Arizona. They are mainly a Casita shop but may be interested in helping with a Scamp. The Google will get you contact info. Good luck!

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Old 06-05-2018, 06:26 AM   #4
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Repair and Maintenance When You're Too Far from Minnesota?

Byron is correct. Warranty issues can be handled at any RV shop with pre-approval from Scamp. Major appliances are warranted by their manufacturers, not Scamp, and repair is handled the same way. Other than fiberglass repair (unlikely) everything else is standard RV issue.

In my opinion it's a better system than having to return to a particular dealer where you bought an RV. You can use the independent shop of your choosing. I've read enough horror stories involving conventional RV's and dealers to make me leery of that system. I have a guy I trust in the White Mountains, but so far I've only had a few minor glitches with our Scamp- all electrical on the 12V side, and all post-warranty. I've owned several RV's, and the Scamp has been the most trouble-free, thanks mainly to its simplicity.

And yes, a Scamp 13 is a good choice with an Outback. Don't opt for dual LP tanks- that will put you over your 200# tongue weight limit. My very basic Scamp 13 with one tank and a group 24 battery typically weighs around 1600-1700# loaded with right at 200# on the tongue. Anything larger- Scamp or otherwise- will be well over 200#.

Best wishes!
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Old 06-05-2018, 07:25 AM   #5
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Byron and Jon are correct however there are a few factors that might complicate things.

First, Evelands can generally do the work cheaper than other RV shops, and therefore you can expect to be strongly encouraged to return to Backus for warranty work, especially if it is for something that is not covered by any separate manufacture’s warranty. At least that was my experience.

Related to this is the uniqueness of the fiberglass egg design. There have been cases of traditional R/V shops who were reluctant to work on this type of camper, or charged a substantially higher price to do so.

There are also some appliances that are covered by a separate manufacture’s warranty, but which are installed in a Scamp in a way that is not completely consistent with the manufacturer’s instructions. Traditional R/V shops might not know how best to handle these situations.

All of these issues can be mitigated by having Eveland’s work closely with you local repair shop, and of course pre-approving any work and payments to be made. Therefore I would not let this stop you from buying a Scamp. Its also a good idea to pick up in Backus and do a very through checkout, but many issues might not be apparent for some time no matter how thorough you are.

Regarding fiberglass problems, my Scamp had a few small bubbles in the topcoat on the corner of a counter top that broke open, exposing sharp edges and the base material, about a month after I drove 2,700 miles to get it. Local fiberglass repair was going to be expensive. The local shop wanted to remove the cabinet / counter top to work on it outside the camper and they were not sure they could match the color. It got to be enough of a hassle trying to get all the details worked out and agreed to that I repaired it myself. The color does not match but its serviceable so I got on with my life.

I bought my Scamp without a furnace because I was to see if I could come up with a better option. After a while I decided that it would be better to just have a local R/V shop put one in, but when I talked to a local R/V place (and not Camping World), they were so unsure how they would install one in a fiberglass egg camper than they were telling me it could take up to a day and a half at $150 an hour for labor (not including the cost of the furnace itself). While this was not warranty work, the same thing can happen with warranty claims. I did see one Scamp owner in a Facebook group just last week mentioned that they were having trouble getting someone to work on their Scamp.

And as an example of non-standard appliance installation, the roof A/C is meant to be installed in a boxed roof, but on a Scamp is installed on the fiberglass roof. The screws for the air distribution box on the ceiling are meant to go into the box frame but in a Scamp they go into the fiberglass and in my case went a little too far and came out the roof (under the A/C) causing a leak. Again, I repaired this since that was the quickest and easiest thing to do. In fact, learning how to do most repairs is often the best option when the one year warranty has expired, and sometimes even before then.
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Old 06-05-2018, 08:17 AM   #6
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Agree that picking up in Backus and staying in the area for a thorough shake-down is a good idea. Manufacturing defects are common in RV's of all kinds, and sadly, Scamp is not immune. The current boom cycle in the industry means factories are cranking out trailers as fast as they can.

That is not always possible, depending on the time of year.
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Old 06-05-2018, 09:00 AM   #7
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Component warranties are covered by the various manufacturers, like the fridge, A/C, axle,fan etc.
These items are common in the industry and can be warranted at just about any RV dealer directly, or coordinated with Scamp.


Not doubting Gordon's horror stories,but they are rare and maybe some even unique. Any competent RV shop would both welcome the business and do the work well.


My Scamp is 14 YO now and has proven to be maintenance and mod friendly, requiring no special skills short of floor or fiberglass repair in the event of a collision. (which we have fortunately avoided)

This is true of course of the dozens of fiberglass trailers I have owned and the innumerable fiberglass trailers I have had the privilege of doing field repairs on.


It is no secret that I am a big fan of fiberglass trailers,and partial to Scamps in particular, and I expect your experience with a new Scamp will likely be FAR better in regard to service than ANY stick built trailer, regardless of the proximity of the dealer.
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Old 06-05-2018, 09:00 AM   #8
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Thanks for all of the responses!

Thank you all for the responses.

Patrick Crawford, I emailed Little Houses to see if they could do repair work on a Scamp. It sounds like they are specifically a Casita shop, but hopefully not. They're located about 4 hours from my house, but really, who doesn't want to go spend a few days in Camp Verde, Prescott, Flagstaff or Sedona while their camper is fixed?

I would definitely go up to Backus to pick up our camper, and plan to spend a week camping in Minnesota before we leave the area. That should help us figure out if there are obvious problems or defects. I have also read that it is best to have Eveland install the wireless brake controller in our Subaru (specifically Subaru).

We are planning to get the AC, Furnace, water heater, and pump on our camper (we want a camper so that we can escape the Tucson heat; 97 days without rain and counting...). Do any of you have a solar system on your campers? Do I need any special prewiring to be done for that?
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Old 06-06-2018, 10:52 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by patrick crawford View Post
Byron you might want to touch base with Little House Customs/Arizona. They are mainly a Casita shop but may be interested in helping with a Scamp. The Google will get you contact info. Good luck!

p@
I contacted Little House to see if they service Scamps, and this was the reply I received: "Nope, I don't do anything on Scamps. Most of what I do is installs of products from Little House Customs in Texas. The only difference between fiberglass trailers and "stick built" is the... well, fiberglass shell. All the other stuff is pretty much the same. If you ask around I'm guessing you can find a good trailer repair place down there that can handle you needs. I don't work on Scamps because I don't do a lot of "repair" work, just the Casita accessories and mods that Larry Gamble sells."
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Old 06-07-2018, 04:48 AM   #10
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Oh well, it was worth a shot anyway. I wish you well with your search for a source of reliable service on your Scamp. Here in SC the lack of available RV service that I can depend on has caused me or become a “DIY” Casita technician (with varying results). I’ve been told that at my age I should continue learning stuff so I suppose it’s not all bad.

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Old 06-07-2018, 06:17 AM   #11
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" I’ve been told that at my age I should continue learning stuff so I suppose it’s not all bad."

I forgot more then I know. Carl
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Old 06-07-2018, 07:51 AM   #12
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There is a 2007 Scamp 19D listed for sale in AZ. The owners live in Tucson, and I believe they had to have some major work done due to an accident caused by a separated axle. They seemed satisfied with the repair, which included fiberglass work. You might contact the seller to find out who did the work. Not suggesting you'll need a repair shop, but it's always good to have some recommendations.
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Old 06-07-2018, 10:46 AM   #13
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" Iíve been told that at my age I should continue learning stuff so I suppose itís not all bad."

I forgot more then I know. Carl
I hear you Carl. Occasionally through my work, I have to go back and read through engineering reports that I wrote numerous years ago. Sometimes I will have little recollection of the content in some of those old reports, and as I am reading I will often be thinking that there is a lot I can still learn from my former self.
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Old 06-07-2018, 10:56 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by sarmay View Post
I would definitely go up to Backus to pick up our camper, and plan to spend a week camping in Minnesota before we leave the area. That should help us figure out if there are obvious problems or defects. I have also read that it is best to have Eveland install the wireless brake controller in our Subaru (specifically Subaru).
Head on over to Lake Superior if you have time, the north shore has a string of beautiful state parks along the lake. You could also go to the headwaters of the Mississippi in Itasca State Park... many many options in the area.

LMK if you want more specific recommendations.
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Old 06-09-2018, 10:19 AM   #15
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Buy one

Owned a 2011 13í and loved it so much we picked up our new one in November. Did all kinds of ungrades on the 2011 and now 2017. I can not think of anything in a scamp that I could not fix. Well made and simple to work on. Got a custom mattress made for it from the guys in Pennsylvania. See eBay. Picked it up on our way back to Connecticut. Love it...
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Old 06-09-2018, 12:14 PM   #16
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Kid check

If you plan to camp with your children, check out the bed measurements before you buy. I doubt you will get a big bed (54") and bathroom like I have, as that leaves precious little space for two people. Several people have written about older kids not fitting the bunk beds if you get that version. I think it depends on how you define "kid."

You could also look at attached or nearby tent for the kids.

Scamp will set you up with a nearby owner if you want to look at a trailer before you buy. I recommend that.
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