Cover my Scamp Fifth Wheel? - Fiberglass RV
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Old 09-10-2016, 09:38 AM   #1
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Name: Teresa
Trailer: Scamp
New York
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Cover my Scamp Fifth Wheel?

I'm going to try again with my query - what do you all think about my covering my Scamp Fifth Wheel over the winter? We are in the Northeast. Next year we move to Arizona and I would suspect covering it during months of non-use might be in order, or at least have it under a protective awning of some kind. What do you all do?
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Old 09-10-2016, 10:12 AM   #2
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Trailer: 2008 Scamp 13 S1
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In order of effectiveness…
  1. Indoor storage.
  2. Temporary or permanent carport structure (local codes apply).
  3. Good quality cover (i.e., Calmark, $$$). Avoid cheap knock-offs and tarps.
  4. Semi-annual application of a good quality marine paste wax.
Local environmental factors may affect the ranking somewhat. Temporary carports may not be rated for local snow loads. Covers may not work well in extremely windy areas, especially if blowing dirt and sand are present.
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Old 09-10-2016, 10:27 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jon in AZ View Post
In order of effectiveness…
  1. Indoor storage.
  2. Temporary or permanent carport structure (local codes apply).
  3. Good quality cover (i.e., Calmark, $$$). Avoid cheap knock-offs and tarps.
  4. Semi-annual application of a good quality marine paste wax.
Local environmental factors may affect the ranking somewhat. Temporary carports may not be rated for local snow loads. Covers may not work well in extremely windy areas, especially if blowing dirt and sand are present.
I like that assessment, but IYHO (and assuming no long-term extreme weather) what is the distance in ranking between #3 and #4. (How much better is a cover than waxing 2x or more times a year.)

In addition to waxing I have elected to treat the rubber and vinyl seals, trim, etc. with a pure silicone paste (with no petroleum based additives). This little $3 tub was more than enough to do a 16 foot Scamp. I have used silicone on the door seals of cars left in the sun and it helps them last longer.

I'm still hoping to move someday where #1 or #2 is possible.
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Old 09-10-2016, 10:41 AM   #4
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My thought, Gordon, is that where conditions permit, a cover not only protects the fiberglass, but it also protects windows, hatches, fittings, seals, etc.

Wax is still important, no matter what else you do. It's the only protection when you're on the road.

As always, this is one person's take. YMMV
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Old 09-10-2016, 11:38 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by Jon in AZ View Post
My thought, Gordon, is that where conditions permit, a cover not only protects the fiberglass, but it also protects windows, hatches, fittings, seals, etc. ...
No doubt it does, unless, as you warned, its a cheap or loose fitting cover that damages the finish.

But I am trying to figure out how much more protection a cover gives, and if it is financially advisable. I have been contemplating this question for about a year and I have not come to a conclusion.

Around $600-650 can buy a lot of wax, silicone and even replacement seals or lockstrip. So, if the amount of protection is not that much more then is it worth the price (and hassle)?

And just like wax is the only protection on the road, the cover only works when it is on the camper.. and how often would someone just not think it was worth the effort to put it on unless its for winter storage. So the cover might only be used half a year, and not when the sun is doing the most damage.

I guess I could debate this forever and never know.. too many variables.
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Old 09-10-2016, 12:00 PM   #6
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And, then you have to consider what sort of cover you'll use to protect an expensive cover.
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Old 09-10-2016, 12:13 PM   #7
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And, then you have to consider what sort of cover you'll use to protect an expensive cover.
An attempt at humor?
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Old 09-10-2016, 12:21 PM   #8
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In March 2013 I brought my Scamp home from Delaware, shoveled out the snowbank and pulled it in. It saw some more snow before the season change, and more again on some of our trips. Then I built my "Scamport which was finished one day before a big snowstorm in December. Indoor storage tends to be expensive, far from home and it's sometimes impossible to get to your trailer before others are moved out of the way, so that was not a viable option for me. The tarps and covers seem to me like a waste of money, I can't see them lasting more than a couple of years at best.

Since you are facing only one more NY winter, I would recommend to park in your driveway, winterized with wheels off the ground and the tires covered. Check for leaks after heavy rains and push snow off of it with a broom. I would go out even during a snowstorm, depending on if it is wet, heavy or light. When you are in AZ, explore how the local scampers deal with their challenges.
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Old 09-10-2016, 12:36 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by gordon2 View Post
An attempt at humor?
Perhaps. Perhaps not.
Eight years, no cover, just wax.
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Old 09-10-2016, 12:46 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by Glenn Baglo View Post
Perhaps. Perhaps not.
Well I will say this.. you always keep me guessing.


I personally prefer to try and express my thoughts on the subjects in this forum as clearly as I can, including when it comes to spending hundreds if not thousands of dollars (for a cover, carport, etc.). But to each their own.

I'll stay subscribed while I continue to debate the purchase of a Calmark cover for myself as well as the OP.

EDIT: Oh I see you added a little after I typed my response, so now I see you on the no cover side of the issue. I only have one year under my belt but so far I am in agreement. Proper maintenance and waxing, and it still looks new (so far).

I will say that I.M.(very)H.O., a cover has more value in the summer than the winter, even in the northeast. Protection from UV is the primary benefit of a cover. So I agree, if the OP is moving next year.. just go without for now and re-evaluate at the new home.
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Old 09-10-2016, 04:35 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by terrinolte View Post
I'm going to try again with my query - what do you all think about my covering my Scamp Fifth Wheel over the winter? We are in the Northeast. Next year we move to Arizona and I would suspect covering it during months of non-use might be in order, or at least have it under a protective awning of some kind. What do you all do?
We have a Scamp 13 and use a cover and wax. It gets waxed before going into storage for the winter, and again in the spring when we get it ready for camping season again. We cover it every single time it is not in use. It's such a small camper, it takes less than five minutes for two of us to put the cover on.

Reasons I like the cover: It keeps blowing dirt and sand from being driven into the windows and body. It keeps snow and rain from being driven into any place that may not be sealing like it should, so I'm not surprised by water inside over the rainy and snowy months. I know wax can help with some of these things, but not all. Our cover is as snug as we can make it and we go over once a week to storage and check to make sure it hasn't come loose, etc.
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Old 09-11-2016, 05:22 PM   #12
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maybe, you could shrink wrap as people here on Lake Erie do for their boats each winter
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Old 09-11-2016, 09:48 PM   #13
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Best way to cover our FGRV's

I Too am trying to decide on the best method to protect my 2010 casita.

We were about to order an expensive custom cover with the zippered door but decided to ask a friend that had used one on his 40' motorhome first. His report was not what I expected. He informed me that while it did protect the finish, rats used the cover as a super highway to gain access to the roof and destroyed all the wires inside ac units, chewed screens and much more. Now he is back to the old wax protection method and has not had anymore rodent damage.

Has anyone else heard of rodents using the RV Covers to climb up nest and do damage?
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Old 09-18-2016, 10:10 AM   #14
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I keep my Scamp under my "Scamport" - just a simple metal roof, no sides, 21' long, 12' wide. Material cost was about $1200, built in two and a half days. To discourage vermin I use moth balls, in a metal can up under the roof, as well as inside the camper. Nobody loves the smell of mothballs, I guess. I am required to move them to the outside storage when we travel.
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Old 09-18-2016, 07:18 PM   #15
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Thankyou for your response Paul. I like that idea for covering the camper and a permanent solution to boot.
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Old 09-19-2016, 07:01 PM   #16
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Name: Ken
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I am in the no cover group

I agree with what Andycamm says. I talked with several RV professionals/service technicians. Most say that even though you have a good or custom fitted cover, they will attract more rodents than without a cover. Also the winter winds still can and will rub on rounded corners etc. causing additional wear on the fiberglass.

I realize that this is probably the minority opinion. BTW, I currently live in SE Michigan.

All the best,

Ken
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