1985 13' Scamp Travel Trailer needs lifting - Fiberglass RV


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Old 04-03-2020, 04:00 PM   #1
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Name: Susan
Trailer: 1985 13' Scamp Travel Trailer
California
Posts: 8
Wink 1985 13' Scamp Travel Trailer needs lifting

Hello,
I am a honorable owner of a 1985 13' Scamp Travel Trailer.
Currently myself and an RV shop is renovating my little gem. We are pondering the idea of raising the trailer as it is way too low.
Has anyone out there in the Scamp world risen their trailer a few inches?
If so, please share with me how you approached this project and if you were successful with raising the trailer.

I've looked through the search threads, however I understand if I don't title my search appropriately I won't find what I'm looking for.

Happy to be here with all of my fellow Fiberglass peeps. I've found my people! Yay.
Sincerely,

Susan
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Old 04-03-2020, 05:05 PM   #2
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Name: Michael
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Hi and welcome, Susan! You'll have to wait until the current situation is over, you know. Because it'll take at least 10 people together to lift that Scamp, and gatherings are prohibited.






If that Scamp has the original axle, it's 35 years old and probably ready for replacement. A Flexiride brand torsion axle has adjustable angle and could provide a lift. That's one option; I'm sure others will be along soon with more.
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Old 04-03-2020, 06:08 PM   #3
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Name: Kenneth
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Wisconsin
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Low rider Scamp fix

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Originally Posted by Susan V View Post
Hello,
Has anyone out there in the Scamp world risen their trailer a few inches?
If so, please share with me how you approached this project and if you were successful with raising the trailer.

Susan
If it’s the original axle it likely needs replacement to get a better ride back. That vintage usually had all the wheel (not tire) showing in the opening. If you want it higher than original, you can order an axel with the spindle arms at a different angle to get the lift. Also note that yours may be welded on and will cost more the replace than a bolted unit. If you fine the axle is has been replaced and has a good ride there are lift kits.
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Old 04-04-2020, 10:37 AM   #4
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Name: Allen
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Quebec
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Hi Susan,
To lift any axle is the same on car, truck, & trailer is the easiest. just drop the axle down from the frame. I do have a question though, WHY ?
The higher the trailer rides the more wind resistance and the more unstable the unit becomes. Maybe you want to off road with it ?
The lower the center of gravity the better is the rule in the trucking industry or most any other except for ground clearance when necessary !
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Old 04-04-2020, 10:49 AM   #5
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Name: Thomas
Trailer: Casita Independence 17’
Texas
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Replace axle

[QUOTE=Susan V;773203]Hello,
I am a honorable owner of a 1985 13' Scamp Travel Trailer.
Currently myself and an RV shop is renovating my little gem. We are pondering the idea of raising the trailer as it is way too low.
Has anyone out there in the Scamp world risen their trailer a few inches?
If so, please share with me how you approached this project and if you were successful with raising the trailer.

I've looked through the search threads, however I understand if I don't title my search appropriately I won't find what I'm looking for.

Happy to be here with all of my fellow Fiberglass peeps. I've found my people! Yay.
Sincerely,

Susan

Susan, send me a private email. I had a Scamp 13’ 1983. And replace the axle.
I send All the info. Tom C
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Old 04-04-2020, 10:49 AM   #6
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Name: Bill
Trailer: Scamp
CA
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Raising a Scamp 13 Chassis

I have a 2019 Scamp 13 and am an idiot when it comes to anything on wheels except for electrical systems. I was in an RV parts and repair shop whose owner I trust. I had thought of lifting the suspension and asked him about it. He told me Scamps have a system that is not favorable to modification. He told me why, but I didn't understand the technical terms so I don't remember. I'd check with an expert.

Bill

Quote:
Originally Posted by Susan V View Post
Hello,
I am a honorable owner of a 1985 13' Scamp Travel Trailer.
Currently myself and an RV shop is renovating my little gem. We are pondering the idea of raising the trailer as it is way too low.
Has anyone out there in the Scamp world risen their trailer a few inches?
If so, please share with me how you approached this project and if you were successful with raising the trailer.

I've looked through the search threads, however I understand if I don't title my search appropriately I won't find what I'm looking for.

Happy to be here with all of my fellow Fiberglass peeps. I've found my people! Yay.
Sincerely,

Susan
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Old 04-04-2020, 12:40 PM   #7
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Name: Kenneth
Trailer: Scamp
Wisconsin
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Scampm suspension lift

Quote:
Originally Posted by Damp Scamp Tramp View Post
I have a 2019 Scamp 13 and am an idiot when it comes to anything on wheels except for electrical systems. I was in an RV parts and repair shop whose owner I trust.
Bill
You are not the idiot; the RV shop lacks the knowledge that trailer shops have. Most cars and trailers have spring suspension, The Scamps and some others have rubber torsion.
You can still put in a lift kit. First picture is a typical rubber torsion system and the second is a 3.5-inch lift kit in my 2017 16foot Scamp to allow for 14 inch tires / wheels. I would not add lift without a good reason as long as it tows well as is. (Also note that there was a metal tab in the center of the axle that must be cut and re-welded, it was not just a bolt on project.)
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Old 04-05-2020, 03:37 PM   #8
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Name: Susan
Trailer: 1985 13' Scamp Travel Trailer
California
Posts: 8
Wink 1985 13' Scamp travel trailer needs lifting

Hello,

Thank-you all for replying. Much appreciated.
I understand the question from you - Thekas - of why? Great reply as you are right, if much higher, more drag, more unstable...etc. I really don't want to lift it that much, no more than 5" for sure. I won't be traveling off road with it, want to lift is to be able to drive up a steep driveway without any sort of drag. Sometime when you start heading up a steep driveway, the back end will hit the pavement.

Thanks for the reply -AC0GV - As the axle is still the original for sure. The Scamp is currently residing at an RV renovation place which has welders. I'll be sure to pass on to him your suggestions.

Your input is greatly appreciated.

Sincerely,
Susan
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Old 04-06-2020, 05:58 AM   #9
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Name: Lil
Trailer: '84 13' Scamp & '14 homebuilt Benroy Teardrop
Minnesota
Posts: 347
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I had the axle on my '84 Scamp replaced in 2012 after a bumpy ride down the I-29 Interstate. Lucky for me I only live 100 miles from the Scamp factory in Backus, MN, so scheduled an appointment. I just got the stock axle without brakes since I don't live or tow in a mountainous area. The new axle made towing much more comfortable.
You can see the before and after pics in my trailer registry.
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Old 04-06-2020, 07:41 AM   #10
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Trailer: 2008 Scamp 13 S1
Arizona
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1985 13' Scamp Travel Trailer needs lifting

I agree that adding a little bit of ground clearance is a good thing.

First, does your trailer have a leading arm or trailing arm axle orientation? Are the wheels 4-lug or 5-lug? Rubber torsion axles are normally installed in the trailing configuration with the pivoting arms at the end of the axle tube pointing toward the back. Early Scamp 13’s were installed in the non-standard leading orientation, with the axle arms pointing forward. I don’t remember when they changed.

If you have the common trailing arm set-up with 5-lug wheels, ordering the current axle from Scamp is your best bet. It will give 3-5” of lift, depending on how much your old axle is sagging. The new (2019) axle is higher, giving a nice Goldilocks ride height for the Scamp 13, not too high, not too low. It comes with strong 10” brakes. Scamp’s prices compare favorably to a custom axle direct from the manufacturer. You can take your trailer to Scamp for installation, or they will ship the axle to your installer.

It’s a bit more complicated if you have the old leading arm set-up, which is why I asked.
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Old 04-06-2020, 01:06 PM   #11
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Name: Susan
Trailer: 1985 13' Scamp Travel Trailer
California
Posts: 8
Wink 1985 13' Scamp Travel Trailer needs lifting

Hello Jon in AZ,

Thanks so much for your valuable information. Passed the info on my RV restoration person.

Your Scamp is cute for sure. I've removed all the cabinets, kitchen, closet from the inside of the Scamp. Will have just a space to sleep on the left side of the door and to the right will have storage for all things needed to camp, cook and use for the outside.
Will be wrapping it with Marine Grade Vinyl on the inside. Light color on the upper half with a chair rail and darker color on the lower side.
Will have the hardware for the door powder coated and spruced up a bit. Will have storage under the bed area.
The trailer is getting upgraded to be powered off and on grid with solar panels powered by a Yeti Solar Generator.
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Old 04-06-2020, 01:15 PM   #12
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British Columbia
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Susan V View Post
I've removed all the cabinets, kitchen, closet from the inside of the Scamp.

What's holding the roof up?
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Old 04-06-2020, 01:43 PM   #13
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Trailer: 2008 Scamp 13 S1
Arizona
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1985 13' Scamp Travel Trailer needs lifting

Glenn is correct. Interior cabinets provide structural support for the shell. Without that support, the shell will be quite jiggly when towing. More important, it will tend to sag over time and spread in the middle. (Sounds a lot like me...) A consequence is poor door fit, among other things.

If you really want an open interior, some have shaped ribs and epoxied them to the sides of the shell to provide the missing support. The door area is most critical.
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Old 04-07-2020, 08:31 AM   #14
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Late thought... Wouldn’t be a bad idea to brace the roof while you’re working on it. Squares of plywood on the floor and ceiling with a 2x6 between them applying a little upward pressure will do it.
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Old 04-07-2020, 08:40 AM   #15
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Wisconsin
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Roof support

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Originally Posted by Jon in AZ View Post
Late thought... Wouldn’t be a bad idea to brace the roof while you’re working on it. Squares of plywood on the floor and ceiling with a 2x6 between them applying a little upward pressure will do it.
I use a modified load lock. It is a left over from my Jayco but now has a home in the Scamp. I first used it to support the air conditioner area when on bad roads, but used it for heavy snow loads in Wisconsin winters as well.
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Old 04-07-2020, 08:54 AM   #16
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Something like that is easier to set up and adjust, as well as to move around as you work on different parts of the trailer. I’ve also seen people using drywall supports.
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Old 04-07-2020, 02:44 PM   #17
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Name: Allen
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does your trailer have a leading arm or trailing arm axle orientation?

Never gave this much thought until you mentioned it. Why do think they switched from leading to trailing ?
Less whiplash = better ride ?
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Old 04-08-2020, 09:03 AM   #18
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1985 13' Scamp Travel Trailer needs lifting

Warranty, perhaps? Guessing a leading installation may void the axle warranty. Brakes, maybe? Locking up the brakes could do some weird things to a leading set-up. Brakes were not normally installed on 13’ers back when leading axles were used. Alignment, possibly? A little factory toe-in makes for better tracking with less tendency to sway. Reversing it makes toe-out? I’ve also read comments about “axle hop” under certain conditions with leading axles, though I haven’t ever heard exactly what that means.

I’m just speculating...

Eddie Longest is one of the best member resources for issues with older Scamps. I believe he posted a detailed thread about a leading axle replacement on a 70’s vintage 13’ Scamp.
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Old 04-11-2020, 10:14 AM   #19
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Susan,

I have a 1978 Scamp, and it too was low. I ordered a new axle from Scamp, and had that installed by a local welder. It took care of the problem. BUT...be forewarned that the frame itself needs thorough inspection before you put a new axle under it. There's no sense in spending money on an axle if the frame is rusting away, cracked, etc. After spending the money on a new axle and installation, I got only about 4 years of use until the frame broke in too many places to bother with repair. Last summer I put a whole new frame and axle under the Scamp. Point is...it's the axle, but make sure the frame is worthy of the investment!
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Old 04-11-2020, 10:23 AM   #20
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Name: Matt in SoAZ
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A few years ago, I cut off my 2010 13’er welded axle and added bolt-on 3in spacers that gave me a bit more clearance. I really wanted to install shocks but just couldn’t find a solution with the lack of room. Here are a couple older threads with no definitive solution, but info nonetheless...

https://www.fiberglassrv.com/forums/...a-44592-2.html

https://www.fiberglassrv.com/forums/...s-49911-3.html
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