1982 Boler remodel, rebuild, restore - Fiberglass RV


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Old 07-24-2014, 08:52 AM   #1
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Name: Martin
Trailer: Boler
Ontario
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1982 Boler remodel, rebuild, restore

Greetings all. After giving up on tent camping and selling our park model trailer my wife and I decided to buy a small trailer to head out for some road trips. We found a 1982 Boler for sale that was owned by a couple who were no longer using it much. It had a well weathered sticker on the back from an RV dealer in Alberta where I assume it was sold new. At some point it ended up in Florida where the current owner purchased it while on a winter vacation and brought it back to Ontario.

When I inspected it I liked the fact that it had not been modified or cut up by any previous owners, the fibreglass was in good shape and the frame looked solid. There was lots of silicone around the windows and roof vent so I knew there would be issues there. I was the first one to get to it when he listed it for sale, the price was fair and I figured it wouldn't last so money exchanged hands and I towed it home.

I knew that any 30+ year old trailer was going to need some loving. I wasn't too surprised when the wiring was a mess of wire nuts, tape and mismatched pieces of wire all cobbled together. The city water connection leaked. Every window except the front and the door leaked. The fridge was a Home Depot bar fridge. I pulled out all the windows, scraped off a lot of silicone, bought a few rolls of butyl and put it back together.

With water penetration under control I stripped the interior down to the ensolite. Our plan for the start was to get rid of the dinette/bed and build a slightly larger permanent bed, better electrical, both AC/DC, improvements in lighting, cooking, refrigeration, storage, porta potti and some modern conveniences such as TV, cell phone and iPad charging capabilities.

Having said that, I'm not a carpenter, a plumber or an electrician. But I do know one end of a hammer from another so I'm willing to take a run at it. I have already completed quite a bit of work so I decided to post my progress here as a way of giving a little back for all of the info I've received here. My posts may be scattered and infrequent due to demands at work etc. But I will attempt to keep up.

I've attached a couple of pics that show the exterior of the Boler when I brought it home and the interior after I stripped it. Click image for larger version

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Old 07-25-2014, 06:05 AM   #2
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Here's a few shots of the beginning phases of the new larger bed. I built it using 1/2 inch plywood. It's screwed, nailed, glued together. I used bulldog grip adhesive in a few spots to bond the wood to the fibreglass. Click image for larger version

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You can also see the new convertor on the left and water pump on the right.


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Old 07-25-2014, 07:01 AM   #3
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It really looks very good!


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Old 07-25-2014, 08:00 PM   #4
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Name: Martin
Trailer: Boler
Ontario
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1982 Boler remodel, rebuild, restore

Couple more shots of the bed nearing completion. Click image for larger version

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I'm not totally happy with the way the doors turned out. I may take them off and have another go at them. They're a bit sloppy and not all that secure. My wife found some storage bins that will fit perfectly under the bed.


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Old 07-25-2014, 10:55 PM   #5
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Good job Martin, you may think of using the center divider as a point to lock the doors to as it is a rigid point. With the right hardware it wouldn't rattle.
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Old 07-26-2014, 12:18 PM   #6
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Greetings Dave. It's not the rattling, I just don't think they turned out as well as they could have. Wouldn't be the first time I've turned perfectly good lumber into kindling.


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Old 07-26-2014, 12:38 PM   #7
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1982 Boler remodel, rebuild, restore

Now that the bed is basically good to go here's a couple of shots of my slightly narrower closet. It'll have an upper and lower section. Fixed shelves at different spacing up top for a cutlery tray, etc. The top shelf will have a 120v plug to charge phones etc and keep the wires out of sight. I'll also drill a hole the run the wires to a small flat screen mounted on the bed side of the closet. Click image for larger version

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You can also see the beginnings of my Progressive Dynamics convertor install.

Comments, questions, suggestions always welcome. Thanks to all, I've borrowed liberally from numerous threads I've been reading here.


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Old 07-26-2014, 01:54 PM   #8
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Looking good Martin
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Old 07-26-2014, 02:53 PM   #9
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Ontario
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Thanks Ian, admire your work and your endless dedication to polishing aluminum!!! Where did you get that beaded curtain? My wife loves it.


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Old 07-26-2014, 05:15 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Raff View Post
Thanks Ian, admire your work and your endless dedication to polishing aluminum!!! Where did you get that beaded curtain? My wife loves it.
I looked all over for the perfect beaded curtain, found this one used on Kijiji.
Originally it was 6' long with the bead strings spaced over an inch apart. I remade the curtain spacing the bead springs 1/2" apart.

Just got back from the Oregon coast and it worked perfectly as a bug screen, not one bug got it
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Old 07-26-2014, 05:19 PM   #11
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Looks like its kijiji time. Thanks


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Old 07-27-2014, 05:56 AM   #12
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I spent all day Saturday working in the boler. I finished the bed, finished the interior of the closet and did some more wiring. The new front bench is partly done and I'll post a few pics when it progresses further. I'll also post some pics of the PD convertor after a trial run to see if I've actually put it together correctly. The included instructions are practically useless but the product seems like it will be great once I figure out how to wire everything up. I haven't started the kitchen area yet. But I have bought a new 2 burner stove, a small microwave and a tap. I still have to get the sink and I've ordered a 12 volt Truckfridge.
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Closet shelves and cheap plastic containers from Walmart. I used 3/4 inch strips wood on the front of the 1/2 plywood shelves to make a small lip so the bins won't slide about during transport

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I put a 120 outlet in the closet to charge phones, iPads and power the tv. All the wires are just in a bunch next to the convertor. I'll soon cut them in and try it out.

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Old 07-27-2014, 06:06 AM   #13
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A couple of shots of the tv mount that will hold a 19" screen that I got on sale at Future Shop. I installed the mount so that you could watch tv from either the bed or the bench. I also set it up so that you could just slide the tv on or off the mount without needing tools. When travelling we'll remove the tv and put it somewhere secure.

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Old 07-27-2014, 06:30 AM   #14
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Name: Martin
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Ontario
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1982 Boler remodel, rebuild, restore

Back to the bed. When I started building the bed area my wife had some rough measurements and went looking for some bins to put in the space underneath. She found these and I worked around them when building. Tons of storage IMO. My wife is a neat storage fanatic.
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Old 08-01-2014, 10:22 PM   #15
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When we started this project we decided that we would mostly be treating it as bedroom on wheels. A comfortable place to sleep, carry our food and supplies and a warm dry place to retreat to in foul weather. So a good bed was tops on our list of wants. My wife knows a guy who makes mattresses in a small factory in Toronto. She dropped in for a visit, brought the Boler cushions, laid them out on his table and asked if he could make a mattress to match the contours of the trailer with some extra width and thickness. He said no problem. Here's the result. Probably too thick but it sure is comfortable. It's all foam, no springs.
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Old 08-01-2014, 10:51 PM   #16
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Name: Martin
Trailer: Boler
Ontario
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1982 Boler remodel, rebuild, restore

In some of my earlier pics you could see the Progressive Dynamics convertor mounted under the bed. As work progressed I was running the assorted wires I thought I would need and left them bundled up at the convertor. I've now cut them in to the convertor, both 12 volt and 120 volt. Took me quite some time as the PD instructions are horrendous. I did a lot of online searches, both on this site and others, bugged a friend at work who has an electrical background and went slow. Fortunately I've done some basic household wiring and I rewired my 1950 Plymouth with an aftermarket kit so I felt confident enough to proceed. Heres a few shots of the proceedings.

Convertor mounted with the 12 DC wires attached to a terminal block. I'll use no more than six of these circuits.

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Convertor with breakers(Home Depot) installed and 120V wiring cut in

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Backside of the convertor with the 12V stuff attached to the terminal block. Thicker white wires are the 120V stuff. White/green/black 8 gauge wire at the bottom right is shower power coming in. White wires at the top right attached to the bus bar are all of the assorted grounds. This bus bar is also grounded to the trailer frame and connected directly to the battery(whenever I get one)

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Shore power connection going into back of trailer. It's a Furrion 30A plug which is a boat part. I got the convertor, shower power plug and lots of other stuff at Vintage Trailer Supply in Vermont. I also put in LED tail lights. Got those on sale at Princess Auto.

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Most of the wires are still not attached to anything at the other end but I did plug the trailer in and started turning on breakers and inserting fuses. I used a test light and meter to check for power at the ends of the wires and all seems in order. Nothing tripped, no smoke, no flames, surprisingly ....

If anyone is considering a convertor upgrade/change the Progressive Dynamics is great IMO. If you have a bit of wiring knowledge and get past the lousy instructions the installation is not as bad as I imagined.


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Old 08-06-2014, 04:56 AM   #17
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Ontario
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So I spent the last few days getting the beginnings of the kitchen area installed. Having made the bed a bit bigger we lost some counter space. I tried to make that up by shortening the gaucho bench and extending the counter towards the front of the trailer. I think it worked out ok. For a counter I bought an in stock piece from HD which modified to fit, a new 2 burner Suburban stove top, a cheap bar sink from Amazon and a laundry tap again from HD.
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The wires a for the water pump switch, a 12 volt outlet and a120v plug with two built in USB jacks.
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The new front bench which I built quite a while ago. Storage on the left and a porta potti on the right. Got the idea for the porta potti setup from another build on this site. Thanks for that.
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Bones of the kitchen are in. I still have to make all the connections, install the fridge which I'm waiting on and build the face frame of the cabinets(need fridge first).
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Overall it's coming along pretty well. But I've got four weeks until we're going on a two week road trip.


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Old 08-06-2014, 05:23 AM   #18
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I keep sighing with jealousy over the work you've done so far! Bought an 81 Boler last week so I've been following your progress and making notes!




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Old 08-06-2014, 03:11 PM   #19
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Name: andrew
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Hi Martin

Your friend in Toronto, would he be interested in making another mattress?
Do you live in Toronto? I live just east in Peterborough

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Old 08-06-2014, 03:12 PM   #20
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Thanks for the kind words. I'm no expert thats for sure. I just go slow and borrow liberally from the folks here. There's plenty of expertise on this site.


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