everything shakes loose - Fiberglass RV


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Old 09-03-2018, 01:08 PM   #1
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Name: Joshua
Trailer: Scamp
Montana
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everything shakes loose

I have a 16' 2006 Scamp; I am new to this forum, so my apologies if this has already been addressed.
My wife and two little kids use it a lot on National Forest, State, and National Parks. When taken down washboard or rough roads, even carefully, everything shakes loose; even the screws shake out.
I have removed and replaced with Locktight every loose screw. On my last trip into the Bechler in Yellowstone, the switching power converter literally shook apart; it is essentially destroyed.
Any advice on:
1) a very durable replacement for the power converter (I hate to put in the same inferior type that shook apart).
2) a way to upgrade the suspension in some fashion so that I do not continue to have everything shake loose?

We are hoping to take the Al-Can highway next year; and I hate to have it fall to pieces on the way.

Thank you.
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Old 09-03-2018, 01:25 PM   #2
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Name: Gordon
Trailer: 2015 Scamp (16 Std Layout 4) with '15 Toyota Sienna LE Tug
North Carolina
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Along with the washboard roads, the axle might be worn out and need to be replaced. Normally 12 years is not too long, but perhaps it had a hard life and wore out sooner. See Torsion Axle - everything you want to know - Boler.ca

I guess you could try shock absorbers.. but thats a topic I dont know enough about to offer advice. This is for a Casita but gives you some idea... http://www.perfectcasita.com/cashabkit.html
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Old 09-03-2018, 01:57 PM   #3
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Name: Lynn
Trailer: '06 Scamp 16
Rochester, New York
Posts: 144
All Shook Up

Two years ago, I replaced the tires on my '06 with new "D" range and inflated to the sidewall marked 65 psi rather than 50 for the "C"s. Everything shook apart as you described. I deflated the new tires to 55 and all is well. I may not have the full benefit of "D" range tires, but our Scamp no longer self destructs.
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Old 09-03-2018, 01:59 PM   #4
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Trailer: 1978 Trillium 4500, 1979 Boler 1700
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You can do the following

- Use thread lock compound.
- Use nylock nuts.
- Look for equipment that's been tested to meet shock and vibration specifications. Instead of using a converter, I use a Mean Well power supply that has been tested to a specific level of shock and vibration, as indicated in the manufacturer's spec sheet. Mean Well also sells waterproof, sealed units.
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Old 09-03-2018, 03:09 PM   #5
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What part is attributable to your driving habits or those of the former owner?
Also check the tires , you should have a "C" rated radial trailer tire inflated to 50 psi.
Too high of a tire rating can be just as bad as too low.
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Old 09-03-2018, 03:15 PM   #6
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Puget Sound, WA
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jbchristensen View Post
I have a 16' 2006 Scamp; I am new to this forum, so my apologies if this has already been addressed.
My wife and two little kids use it a lot on National Forest, State, and National Parks. When taken down washboard or rough roads, even carefully, everything shakes loose; even the screws shake out.
I have removed and replaced with Locktight every loose screw. On my last trip into the Bechler in Yellowstone, the switching power converter literally shook apart; it is essentially destroyed.
Any advice on:
1) a very durable replacement for the power converter (I hate to put in the same inferior type that shook apart).
2) a way to upgrade the suspension in some fashion so that I do not continue to have everything shake loose?

We are hoping to take the Al-Can highway next year; and I hate to have it fall to pieces on the way.

Thank you.
Joshua,

Welcome to the forum. You mention some issues following your "last trip into the Bechler". First of all, these trailers are not designed to be driven into rivers.

Okay, more seriously, check the compatibility of the Loctite product(s) you are using with the materials that you are using it on. A number of the traditional Loctite products that I had some experience with years back were made for use on metal-to-metal applications.

When I work with soft woods, I often use cyanoacrylate (super glue) to strengthen the wood fibers when using wood or sheet metal screws. This is just to reduce pull-out; I don't know how much this helps reduce the screws backing out.

As far as power converters go, Progressive Dynamics seems to be the favored choice for their battery charging characteristics. However, I don't know whether they might be any better at resisting vibration. I bought a Mean Well power supply for another application that is of very good quality, so that idea is also intriguing.

I particularly like the ideas posted about checking your axle (the rubber in torsion axles dries out and gets stiff over time) and considering larger tires and/or lower pressures along with potentially shocks.

I think the idea of reducing the shaking overall has the most promise. You might even consider getting a little 12 volt compressor so you can run lower tire pressures on the trails and rough roads, then air-up for high-speeds on the pavement.

Good luck, and stay out of those rivers!
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Old 09-03-2018, 03:59 PM   #7
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Name: Ronald
Trailer: Scamp
TN
Posts: 6
cable with computer

Most of the rv parks seem to have cable where we stay with our 13ft Scamp. Dont want to install a tv,but interested in watching, the news and weather through my computer. Is there a router out there that will take cable and convert it so I can connect to with my lap top? How bout a wireless usb plug in for those parks that have over the air tv?
Thanks
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Old 09-03-2018, 04:15 PM   #8
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start a separate thread

Ronald on the Plateau, great questions. Yes there are gadgets that take cable tv as input and over the air tv as input to your laptop. I recommend to (edit: you) start a separate thread for these questions, as that will garner much more attention.
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Old 09-03-2018, 05:04 PM   #9
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Name: J
Isle of Wight
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jbchristensen View Post
I have a 16' 2006 Scamp; I am new to this forum, so my apologies if this has already been addressed.
My wife and two little kids use it a lot on National Forest, State, and National Parks. When taken down washboard or rough roads, even carefully, everything shakes loose; even the screws shake out.
I have removed and replaced with Locktight every loose screw. On my last trip into the Bechler in Yellowstone, the switching power converter literally shook apart; it is essentially destroyed.
Any advice on:
1) a very durable replacement for the power converter (I hate to put in the same inferior type that shook apart).
2) a way to upgrade the suspension in some fashion so that I do not continue to have everything shake loose?

We are hoping to take the Al-Can highway next year; and I hate to have it fall to pieces on the way.

Thank you.
Are your tires balanced?
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Old 09-03-2018, 07:22 PM   #10
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Trailer: 2004 13 ft Scamp Custom Deluxe
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American brand converters have two huge heatsinks on the board which will eventually succumb to rough roads and heat and just fall off the board taking rectifier diodes with them.. Like about seven or eight years. That's about as long as the fan lasts anyway. keeping the dust bunnies out will help keep them cool as will using an alternate charger when the trailer is in storage.
If you have this converter, it a simple matter to change the board and the fan, or you can easily switch to a different converter but keep the old case as a fuse/breaker panel without doing a rewire.
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Old 09-04-2018, 09:37 AM   #11
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Name: David
Trailer: Scamp 13 ft
California
Posts: 368
Scamp Shakin'

We have the shaking problem with screws and nuts loosening. Can any Scamp owner say, " I don't have that problem !" ? ?
On the heavy pressed wood closet door I drilled out the screw holes and installed the hinges with brass bolts and nuts with lock washers. Anywhere a screw gets loose you can try to use a nut and bolt. On my stove I lay a mat or pillow or towel in it when traveling, held by white bungee cord material. That keeps it from vibrating and bouncing loose. You can buy the bungee cord by the foot and stretch it across upper or lower cabinets when you drive, it can keep them closed but also give some support when looped around drawer or door pulls.

I just met a family 2 days ago in Sonora, they were coming back from the Strawberry Music Festival and their door (13'Scamp) was tired to the back bumper with a Rope ! I told them about Ian's hinge repair kit, as their door was sagging. And I told them how I tie the small white bungee cord material around the fire extinguisher bracket on the back of the closet, across the closet door to lift and keep it closed, then as I step out of the scamp I slip the loop at the end of that cord around the door handle on the outside. That pulls and lifts the door inward. When you want to get in the trailer just slip the loop off the door as you unlock it. Works pretty well. It is a long term job to combat loosening nuts and screws in a fiberglas trailer. As Jerry Lee Lewis said about fiberglas trailers, " Whole lotta shakin' going on ! " David , shakin' in Fresno and Sonora
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Old 09-04-2018, 09:52 AM   #12
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Name: Wayne & Barbara
Trailer: Parkliner
Iowa
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Do you physically feel and/or see the trailer bouncing on the rough roads?
Lower the tire pressure. 34 - 40 psi should be enough.
Also, reduce or increase speed to get away from the natural frequency of the system.
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Old 09-04-2018, 10:15 AM   #13
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Name: David
Trailer: Scamp 13 ft
California
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Bouncing ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Wayne Collins View Post
Do you physically feel and/or see the trailer bouncing on the rough roads?
Lower the tire pressure. 34 - 40 psi should be enough.
Also, reduce or increase speed to get away from the natural frequency of the system.

My experience is you have to be behind the trailer to really see bounding. I have driven behind Scamps and Casitas and have been surprised at the ferocity of the bouncing on rough roads ! Drive behind your Scamp as someone else tows it ; you may get a better feeling for the amount of bouncing and possible causes. David in Fresno and Sonora
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Old 09-04-2018, 10:25 AM   #14
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Trailer: 2004 13 ft Scamp Custom Deluxe
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DavidG View Post
We have the shaking problem with screws and nuts loosening. Can any Scamp owner say, " I don't have that problem !" ? ?
I can! I don't have that problem!. (14YO Scamp13D)
Many concrete roads are improperly screeded which can cause the trailer to bounce like a basketball. Low tire pressure would only exacerbate the problem.
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Old 09-04-2018, 10:35 AM   #15
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Name: Greg
Trailer: 2008 Casita 17 SD
Washington
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wayne Collins View Post
Do you physically feel and/or see the trailer bouncing on the rough roads?
Lower the tire pressure. 34 - 40 psi should be enough.
Also, reduce or increase speed to get away from the natural frequency of the system.
Tires, especially ST (Special Trailer) tires, are designed to be run at near the top end of their psi rating. Lowering the psi in a tire tends to weaken the side-wall strength because much of it's rigidity is tied to running them at full tire pressure. Running at lower pressure may soften your ride, but you risk creating more internal heat and flex-caused lamination separation in the tire rubber from excessive flexing. That can lead to a catastrophic blow-out while going down the road. Most tire sidewall blow-outs are caused by under-inflation.
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Old 09-04-2018, 10:46 AM   #16
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Name: Gordon
Trailer: 2015 Scamp (16 Std Layout 4) with '15 Toyota Sienna LE Tug
North Carolina
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DavidG View Post
We have the shaking problem with screws and nuts loosening. Can any Scamp owner say, " I don't have that problem !" ? ?
...
I've had a few screws loose from time to time (something my friends know all too well ) but nothing so extreme as what the OP seems to be dealing with. Either he is going too fast on too rough roads, and /or there is a worn suspension.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Wayne Collins View Post
...
Lower the tire pressure. 34 - 40 psi should be enough.
....
Very bad and dangerous advice unless you know the specifics and weights involved.
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Old 09-04-2018, 10:49 AM   #17
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Name: J
Isle of Wight
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Originally Posted by Casita Greg View Post
Tires, especially ST (Special Trailer) tires, are designed to be run at near the top end of their psi rating. .
I cannot agree with the above. Take a look at the chart attached. It comes from the ST tire manufacturer. The amount the tire can carry is determined by the pressure. So for lighter loads you need nowhere close to max pressure.

Jim
Attached Thumbnails
rv_inflation-page-001.jpg  
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Old 09-04-2018, 11:04 AM   #18
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Well, I disagree with your disagreement, but you have your right to disagree...
Here's what Goodyear says about it. Particularly the 3rd and 4th paragraphs of their recommendations and rationale for maintaining higher pressure.

https://goodyearrvtires.com/tire-inflation-loading.aspx
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Old 09-04-2018, 11:08 AM   #19
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Name: J
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Casita Greg View Post
Well, I disagree with your disagreement, but you have your right to disagree...
Here's what Goodyear says about it. Particularly the 2nd and 3rd paragraph of their recommendations and rationale for maintaining higher pressure.

https://goodyearrvtires.com/tire-inflation-loading.aspx
I shall stop now - but that article reinforces my disagreement.

They basically say "..For this reason, actual air pressure required should be determined based on the load on each individual tire..."

All the rest of their warnings are about the danger of under-inflation. I 100% agree that that is bad - but that is not how we got here....
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Old 09-04-2018, 11:35 AM   #20
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Name: K C
Trailer: 1971 Trailswest Campster
Washington
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An easy trick to keep the screws from backing out of wood. Instead of Loctite just put some Buty rubber tape around the threads. As you turn the screw in any excess material will come back to the surface where it is easily cleaned off. No problem removing the screws when you want to do so but they won't vibrate back out of the holes. It also keeps moisture out so fewer issues with rust developing on the screw's shaft. Always good to have a little butly rubber tape on hand.


I was just putting in the new bolts that hold my trailer's shell to the frame. As they pass through the plywood floor I coated the first inch under the head of the bolts with butyl, I also coated the bottom of the washers and put a small amount just under the head. This will keep any water spills from the interior traveling down the shaft of the bolts into the plywood and then on into the tubes of the frame. After having to repair my plywood floor from water damage that happened around those bolts I realized this easy extra step taken when installing new bolts would be an ounce of prevention that cost me nothing but a few extra minutes of time as I already had some butyl tape on hand. All the screws from the cabinets that go into the plywood floor will also get the same treatment.
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