BigFoot 25B25RT - Fiberglass RV
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Old 03-24-2020, 03:53 AM   #1
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Name: Tom
Trailer: BigFoot 25B25RT
Massachusetts
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BigFoot 25B25RT

I'm starting a modification thread for my BigFoot.

The first thing is the battery. I don't know if it comes with one or if the one I have was put in by trailer world but it has to go.

It is a Crown 24SDC-XD. Crown makes good batteries but this one is a Marine battery and won't even run the furnace overnight. It has to go. I am planning on a solar setup with LiFePo4 batteries. I'm still reading about the batteries so we will have to see.

I drove 2000 miles with a straight hitch "no weight distribution". I have seen what I hope is the worst of towing the 25RT. I got into some pretty good "bad" crosswinds in Missouri. I wouldn't call it white knuckle driving but it was concerning. You always have the ever present Semi-truck suck you over phenom which I also had with my Styrofoam Box. I haven't been able to figure this one out because some trucks are worse than others.

A few weeks ago I ordered a Pro-Pride hitch and I got a shipping email yesterday. That will be the first project as weather permits. The hitch is supposed to show up tomorrow.

I'm thinking of taking out one of the twin beds and putting in a chaise lounge and opening it up to the storage underneath.

Well that is all for now. If it is warm enough today I may wash it.
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Old 03-24-2020, 07:00 AM   #2
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Congrats and pics when you can!
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Old 03-24-2020, 07:24 AM   #3
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Trailer: 28' Bigfoot Silver Cloud
Woodstock, IL
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Installed correctly, the ProPride will take care of your towing stability issues. We've had one on our Bigfoot Silver Cloud since 2016 and wouldn't leave home without it.
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Old 03-24-2020, 04:02 PM   #4
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Echoing Kevin on supporting ProPride.

We would not own our Bigfoot Silver Cloud today without the ProPride hitch. You know the adage, "Happy wife, happy life." I (we) were terrified driving the Silver Cloud home from Oregon, even with a weight distribution hitch. I spent the first night searching the Internet for how do drive with sway issues and shared results with Kevin. So, he spent the next few months man-handling the steering wheel every time we met a semi or bus. After the ProPride was put in place, he was driving to FL with one hand on the steering wheel when I pointed out that we were being passed by a bus (They are worse than semis.).

You may need to cut a bit to install it. It is heavy, and the thing sticks out a bit from the hitch (A young kid backed into ours last year and broke his bumper, but the parking lot was not set up well either.). I included pix of our installation.

CindyL
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Brake 1.jpg   Brake 2.jpg  

Brake 3.jpg   Brake 4.jpg  

Brake 5.jpg   Brake 6.jpg  

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Old 03-24-2020, 05:23 PM   #5
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What’s it like hitching/unhitching with the ProPride hitch? It looks like a lot more parts than my standard spring bar WDH. We haven’t experienced adverse sway with our 25 (no separate sway control) but did with the 17.5 without a friction sway control. Actually since upgrading the axles, springs, and shocks it tows like magic.
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Old 03-24-2020, 06:01 PM   #6
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Just back into the receiver. Kevin has a backup camera and supplements with the yellow balls on a stem. You need to be straight. He is dynamite at it now which makes us both happy. No more screaming on my part.

The only down side is that the mechanism that attaches to the tow vehicle is really large and heavy.

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Old 03-25-2020, 09:32 PM   #7
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Name: Tom
Trailer: BigFoot 25B25RT
Massachusetts
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I ordered my hitch with a different bracket setup going to the weight distribution bars. I won't have to cut into fiberglass as much. I wanted to get the hitch and use Blu-Ox chain plates but he wouldn't send the unit without his plates.

https://store.propridehitch.com/lipp...echnology-kit/

I may still use the Blu-Ox ones though.

https://www.etrailer.com/Accessories...x/BXW4010.html
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Old 03-26-2020, 01:21 PM   #8
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Massachusetts
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ShelbyM View Post
Congrats and pics when you can!
I got it washed the other day. The hitch came in via Fed X in 4 boxes. The driver was coughing "good grief". She had backed into my driveway and I told her to just push the packages off of her tailgate and that I would take care of them. She wasn't getting it. I told her to stay in the truck and I put the packages on the ground. I wheeled them into my shed where they and my gloves are self quarantining for a few days.
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Old 04-01-2020, 12:50 PM   #9
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Mapping my Strategy

I don't believe what I am getting ready to do. $50,000 + for a new RV and I am getting ready to rebuild it. I need a place to put batteries, an inverter and a few other things. Under the dining seating on the left side is the place. The BigFoot is real nice and all but there are a few places that are just as bad as that Styrofoam box that I traded in. It is just horrible.
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Old 04-01-2020, 01:06 PM   #10
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That mess is the wiring and the fuse panel. It is going to take some time to neaten that up. If I reroute a pipe and remove the charger I can gain some space but I don't think it will be enough for an inverter. The solar prewiring is supposed to be in there somewhere.

Then continuing down the bench we have an empty area that could be enlarged for the batteries.
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Old 04-01-2020, 01:17 PM   #11
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The water pump is going to be moved to the vertical surface in front of the water heater. I am also going to add a water tank like I did on my last RV. It was a nice modification.

https://www.amazon.com/SHURFLO-182-2...3&sr=8-1-fkmr0

I can gain about 15 inches moving the water pump and a hose.
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Old 04-01-2020, 01:49 PM   #12
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Trailer: BigFoot 25B25RT
Massachusetts
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I have decided to go with Battle Born batteries rather than build my own. The 10 year warranty on the Battle Born's convinced me of that.

Renogy has a battery to battery charger plus solar controller that I like the looks of. It can handle up to 600 watts of solar. With this setup I will be able to run the refrigerator on AC while driving.

https://www.renogy.com/dcc50s-12v-50...ger-with-mppt/

I need to find a 2000 - 3000 watt inverter with charging and transfer switch.

The solar panels will be last and I think I will go with the ones that Jim Bennett used on his fifth wheel Escape.

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Old 04-01-2020, 03:38 PM   #13
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Trailer: Bigfoot 25B21RB
California
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ThomasC View Post
I'm starting a modification thread for my BigFoot.

The first thing is the battery. I don't know if it comes with one or if the one I have was put in by trailer world but it has to go.

It is a Crown 24SDC-XD. Crown makes good batteries but this one is a Marine battery and won't even run the furnace overnight. It has to go. I am planning on a solar setup with LiFePo4 batteries. I'm still reading about the batteries so we will have to see.

I drove 2000 miles with a straight hitch "no weight distribution". I have seen what I hope is the worst of towing the 25RT. I got into some pretty good "bad" crosswinds in Missouri. I wouldn't call it white knuckle driving but it was concerning. You always have the ever present Semi-truck suck you over phenom which I also had with my Styrofoam Box. I haven't been able to figure this one out because some trucks are worse than others.

A few weeks ago I ordered a Pro-Pride hitch and I got a shipping email yesterday. That will be the first project as weather permits. The hitch is supposed to show up tomorrow.

I'm thinking of taking out one of the twin beds and putting in a chaise lounge and opening it up to the storage underneath.

Well that is all for now. If it is warm enough today I may wash it.
Lithium batteries are the way to go!

I just installed a Battle Born, which is a popular manufacturer on this forum. They include a 10 year warranty.
Their customer service is fairly good.

Here’s a link.

http://https://battlebornbatteries.com/contact/

Be aware: you may need to update the lower portion of your controller.
You will want to install a battery voltage meter. The trailer’s battery monitor is not designed to work with a lithium.

We used our BF19’s weight distribution system on the NTU BF 21. I originally purchased a WDS which could be used on a future BF 21. We ran into stiff cross winds returning from our first trip last year. I realized that we needed to add a sway bar.

Heard about Blue Ox. May want to upgrade.

Good luck with everything.
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Old 04-01-2020, 04:35 PM   #14
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Trailer: Bigfoot
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Originally Posted by ThomasC View Post
That mess is the wiring and the fuse panel. It is going to take some time to neaten that up. If I reroute a pipe and remove the charger I can gain some space but I don't think it will be enough for an inverter. The solar prewiring is supposed to be in there somewhere.

Then continuing down the bench we have an empty area that could be enlarged for the batteries.

The solar wiring prewire on my 2018 21RB came through the roof via the fridge vent. I was able to trace the wires and found they were near the radio. Not sure if the 25's are the same. From there the wires were routed back toward the rear wheels and eventually down through the floor. You can probably find the wires if you look under the Bigfoot. There should be a wire guard attached to the underside of the floor.


I posted pictures of my wires in this post:


https://www.fiberglassrv.com/forums/...tml#post766040
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Old 04-04-2020, 11:19 AM   #15
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Trailer: Bigfoot
Everywhere
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Originally Posted by ThomasC View Post
I have decided to go with Battle Born batteries rather than build my own. The 10 year warranty on the Battle Born's convinced me of that.

Renogy has a battery to battery charger plus solar controller that I like the looks of. It can handle up to 600 watts of solar. With this setup I will be able to run the refrigerator on AC while driving.

https://www.renogy.com/dcc50s-12v-50...ger-with-mppt/

I need to find a 2000 - 3000 watt inverter with charging and transfer switch.

The solar panels will be last and I think I will go with the ones that Jim Bennett used on his fifth wheel Escape.

I can definitely recommend the Victron Multiplus for an inverter/charger/ATS in that power range. It's probably worth going all-in on Victron for the battery meter and solar charger at that point, though. Only downside is that it's pretty bulky - I actually had to put it under the passenger-side bench in the 25RQ (along with the lithium batteries).

I went with 4x200W Hightec panels and am happy so far with the results. That's pretty close to the maximum that could be fit up there without deleting skylights, vents, or antennas.
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Old 04-10-2020, 04:05 PM   #16
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Name: Tom
Trailer: BigFoot 25B25RT
Massachusetts
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Pro Pride

I have the hitch 90% installed. All that is left is final torquing, weight distribution. and road testing. I can't really do that because the BigFoot isn't registered. I drove home with my old plate and registration. That is legal in Mass for 7 days but since I got home everything is closed and I haven't transferred my plate to the new camper.

The first thing I did is remove the 8 screws that hold the front storage area to the frame. A couple of wood blocks propped it up enough to get hardware on the frame rails. When everything is complete I can lower the storage box and mark where I have to notch the fiberglass.


The first photo just shows the BF jacked up a bit to make it easier to work on.

Then the box is propped up.

Finally I put the box back down to get an idea how much fiberglass needed to be cut.
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Old 04-10-2020, 04:16 PM   #17
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Cut and weld

There is a bracket that needs to be installed and it may interfere with the battery. That battery is going away though and it will be replaced by an undetermined number of Battle Born batteries that are going inside.

I also had to notch the battery/propane carrier then weld and paint.

Here is the notch from the inside then the outside.
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Old 04-10-2020, 04:45 PM   #18
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Trailer: BigFoot 25B25RT
Massachusetts
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The Stinger and the Hitch Box

Finally I setup the stinger and the hitch box and latched it the trailer. I will take a few more photos and finish up this post about the Pro Pride in a bit.
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Old 04-11-2020, 07:16 AM   #19
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Trailer: 28' Bigfoot Silver Cloud
Woodstock, IL
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Thomas, where is the yoke for the head that anchors it to the trailer tongue? Also, it may be the angle of the picture, but the front looks really up with the stinger assembly turned "upside down" like you have it. I would worry that the stinger assembly would hit the ground when the trailer jack is lowered and weight is applied on the tongue.
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Old 04-11-2020, 08:20 AM   #20
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Trailer: BigFoot 25B25RT
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Thomas, where is the yoke for the head that anchors it to the trailer tongue? Also, it may be the angle of the picture, but the front looks really up with the stinger assembly turned "upside down" like you have it. I would worry that the stinger assembly would hit the ground when the trailer jack is lowered and weight is applied on the tongue.
No yoke yet in that picture. The trailer is high to make things easier to work on. I like sitting on a milk crate while doing this sort of stuff.

You have to take a lot of measurements before starting the installation. I found a relatively flat if not level area of my driveway to take measurements of the trailer and the truck. The truck was 2 inches lower than the trailer and that is the configuration that the stinger has to be in. If my truck were a 4WD it would likely have been higher and that whole rig flipped over.

I agree with you about the low part. I'm quite sure that when the installation is done that I will cut off those bottom few inches.

The Hensley hitch uses a one piece stinger and you need to buy one with the correct offset. You got me thinking now using this one as a model I could weld a lighter more streamlined one. That would have to be a far future project.

Yeah I just went outside to look at it. I could make a stronger lighter one (no bolts). I have a 2 inch offset so just take one receiver bar and put it under the hitch box bar, weld, grind, plate and weld again. The plate and weld again would be over kill safety factor. I'll have to see if they will sell me a stinger on a longer straight bar. after all if your TV happened to line up with the hitch, no offset, all you would need is a straight bar.
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