Hi I am Jonathan - Fiberglass RV


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 07-10-2018, 10:06 AM   #1
Junior Member
 
Name: Jonathan
Trailer: Amerigo F-16 1978?
New Hampshire
Posts: 19
Registry
Hi I am Jonathan

Hello,
I recently joined to discover some expertise on renovating an old glass camper.


I will have questions every step of the way.
Also seeking recommendations on all appliances as I have none!


I have renovated a number of houses from top to bottom, but never a camper. I see the projects as similar however some of the common sense may be elusive, so please be patient while I learn the lingo!



The entire interior and windows had to be remove and I now only have the shell. I have some frame rot and need to pull the shell off the frame.
Anyone ever priced out a new fabricated frame?

Are there any fiberglass repair semi pros out there who can consult with me on filling in an entire window hole with fiberglass?
I also have a roof that seems to have sagged with heavy snow loads over the years and I want to remove the interior ceiling shell that seems to be glued to the roof. I want to do this so I can construct some form of internal roof support.
Has anyone done this in their Amerigo F-16?
I do not think this roof can handle an A/C unit in this condition plus water can now puddle on the roof and that is not acceptable to me. Living in the North East this will only lead to future problems.
I look forward to conversing with you all. Any opinions and suggestions are greatly appreciated.


Thank you
Jonathan
__________________

JonnyX151 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-10-2018, 11:33 AM   #2
Senior Member
 
Name: bill
Trailer: 2013 Escape 19; 1977 Trillium 1300
The Mountains of North Carolina
Posts: 2,657
Registry
Do a search, there is a long thread on fiberglass repair as well as multiple Amerigo restoration stories.

One thing to consider, the internal cabinets provide the structural strength for the trailer. So as you remove the cabinets, you are going to need to replace them with something to support the roof. And considering your roof sag, you probably need more than what was in the trailer before you gutted it.

Replacement frames are all about welders in your area.

Having a covered work area: carport or garage, is a big plus on this adventure!


http://www.fiberglassrv.com/forums/f...lly-73007.html
__________________

thrifty bill is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-10-2018, 12:36 PM   #3
Junior Member
 
Name: Jonathan
Trailer: Amerigo F-16 1978?
New Hampshire
Posts: 19
Registry
Hello Bill,


Thank you very much for the quick reply and direction.
I will be sure to post more questions under the appropriate forum.


I look forward to communicating with this community, hopefully I will be able to to help in some fashion in the future with questions or needed information.


I will do my best to post pictures of the renovation if I find that is what people like.


Thank you,
Jonathan
JonnyX151 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-10-2018, 02:30 PM   #4
Senior Member
 
Name: Eric
Trailer: 1987 Casita 16
Illinois
Posts: 475
Jonathan,
Welcome! If you have done houses, about the only thing different is the fiberglass work, and the fact that many of the things that you will need are not standard. If you are pretty good at adapting something, you will be fine. There are a couple of threads under the mods section you might want to read through. NorCalMike has a thread "my broken back" which he fixed the sway in a casita roof, and that can help -- he also did some window movement etc. kcorbin has a thread there on a campster rebuild -- very helpful in a lot of different things, and she is very good at giving helpful pointers as you go along. Her thread is also an excellent one for rebuilding. I have a thread in there as well, a 1988 casita rebuild. I had never done anything with FG before, so it takes a little to get comfortable -- at least for me. The great thing about FG is that if you are not happy, sand it out and do it again -- as many times as you want.



As Bill mentions lots of people to help. There are even a couple of threads on frame rebuilds, if you weld, or have a friend who does, or a welding shop you can get to, you should be able to do this.



Have fun -- the adventure is just beginning!!!
EricAllyn is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-10-2018, 04:16 PM   #5
Senior Member
 
Jon in AZ's Avatar
 
Name: Jon
Trailer: 2008 Scamp 13 S1
Arizona
Posts: 8,664
Registry
Welcome, Jonathan!

This thread has lots of good information to get you started on fiberglass work.
http://www.fiberglassrv.com/forums/f...ass-52498.html

Glassing over an entire window means finding a piece of donor fiberglass to fit the opening and fiberglassing it in in place. Repairs of that magnitude mean you'll probably be painting the shell when you're done.

Best wishes with your rehab! Hope you'll post pictures and updates as you go.
Jon in AZ is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-11-2018, 09:31 AM   #6
Senior Member
 
Name: J Ronald
Trailer: Currently shopping
North Carolina
Posts: 236
Window

You can purchase various sizes and thickneses of fiberglass sheets that are vacuum cured. I do not have a suggestion where to purchase them but someone at a boat yard will know. In the event you are not aware, strength can be added to fiberglass panels by forming a half tube across it. Place a piece of carboard tube, garden hose or something similar. Wet out some fiberglass weave or mat and place it over the tube and extend the fiberglass out beyond the tube some. The carboard or garden hose is just a form, The fiberglass tube that is formed is the strenghtener. I've not done this upside down but you sound inventive so good luck. By the way this adds considerable strength. Be sure to grind or sand the area you will be attaching the tube to.
J Ron is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-11-2018, 11:03 AM   #7
Senior Member
 
Kai in Seattle's Avatar
 
Name: Kathleen (Kai: ai as in wait)
Trailer: Amerigo FG-16 1973 "Peanut"
Greater Seattle Metropolitan Area, Washington
Posts: 2,567
Registry
Welcome to FGRV.

We had to gut and redo our Amerigo, which took Paul 8-10 hours a day for nine months, 7 days a week from fall 2015 to July 2, 2016. We had to prop up the roof, remake all the inside wall panels, and fill over 82 holes and cracks--the largest hole was the fridge vent hole.


I like working on an Amerigo, as if you know houses, you have half the battle solved already. Paul learned to fiberglass (epoxy resin) and the thread, Fear of Fiberglassing,

https://www.google.com/url?q=http://...jSthHVIqzjz-HE

is on FGRV. There are photos of our rebuild under this link:

http://www.fiberglassrv.com/forums/s...ad.php?t=75232

and here are a few more:

How long your redo takes is up to you...some have done it lightning fast, others take years. We've never yet come back from a trip without a to-do list; our latest was 58 items long with more popping up as we worked through the list. I think fixing and playing with the trailer is part of the fun and charm.


BEST

Kai
Attached Thumbnails
Peanut 10 2015 to 6 2016 027.JPG   1A 3 Setting it down again after removing it from the frame.jpg  

1A 10 By the fresh water inlet.jpg   Peanut 8 2016 D.jpg  

__________________
Semper ubi sub ubi.
Kai in Seattle is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-11-2018, 03:14 PM   #8
Senior Member
 
Name: K C
Trailer: 1971 Trailswest Campster
Washington
Posts: 2,776
It is possible to lay up a piece of fiberglass repair panel to use as a large filler. You need a very flat work surface. Cover it with plastic. Purchase a piece of peel ply from a fiberglass supplier. The peel ply goes against the plastic as your first layer. It keeps the resin from sticking to the plastic and can be peeled off your panel once it has hardened leaving behind a nice smooth surface. You put down the cloth in layers saturating it with resin between the layers until you have the desired thickness. If you like you can also put peel ply as the final layer as it allows you to run a squeege over its surface without dragging against the fibers in the cloth or matting so you also have a smooth inside surface. Let it cure for a day or two and then you can pick up your panel, remove the peel ply and trim it to the final size to fit in the opening. It is pretty much impossible to match the gel coat colors on older FGRVs so I don't bother with that. Just paint the trailer when done.

For the fiberglass cloth you can use non woven matting but I would also consider adding one of the cross woven sheets of cloth for extra strength.

Using epoxy will be more expensive but the benefit is you have a longer amount of time before it kicks off. The Mas brand of epoxy has a slow version of hardener. I like the Mas brand as it does not contain the sensitizers that other brands of epoxies have.

Don't forget to bevel the inside and outside edges of your patch and the opening as well. You need to do that for the strongest bond.


Cured epoxy is UV sensitive so get a coat of primer on your repair within a few weeks time.
k corbin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-11-2018, 03:25 PM   #9
Senior Member
 
Name: K C
Trailer: 1971 Trailswest Campster
Washington
Posts: 2,776
The West Systems brand of epoxy has created a free pdf repair manual showing how to do all kinds of work including created stiffners to help with the roof sag. One approach to it that keeps your head room is to put the stiffeners on the top of the roof. You would put supports on the interior to lift it up to the right profile before you create the stiffening ribs. The manual has illustrations showing the essential steps of how to create the ribs.

https://www.westsystem.com/wp-conten...anual-2015.pdf


Just be sure that you don't create dams or interfere with where roof vents or air conditioners sit. But you could created a thickened raised flat perimeter area for the air conditioner that gives better support. Think it through completely with a lot of "what happens if I" visualized scenarios before you start the project.


You can create a small practice sized stiffener rib and flat panel before you commit to a full on DIY repair job on the trailer itself. That will give you some base line experience.
k corbin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-12-2018, 01:33 PM   #10
Junior Member
 
Name: Jonathan
Trailer: Amerigo F-16 1978?
New Hampshire
Posts: 19
Registry
EricAllyn,
Wow I am so excited everyone is responding with such great information.
I am feeling more comfortable already knowing I have found such a great community of people willing to help. I am excited to start the modifications but was hesitant so as not have to redo too much work.
No welding in my repertoire just casting and brazing which is of no help here!
I will check out all the links and tips you have given.
Thank you again, when I have a chance I will move some pictures over to my computer so I can post some progress!


Thank you
Jonathan
JonnyX151 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-12-2018, 01:37 PM   #11
Junior Member
 
Name: Jonathan
Trailer: Amerigo F-16 1978?
New Hampshire
Posts: 19
Registry
Hello Jon in AZ,
Yes I am going to look for some donor glass but I think I may create a layer myself.
I got a great deal on a roll of woven glass, I hope it is what I need for the job!
As for painting, oh yes the wife is picking out colors already factored a grand or two into the budget for a new coat!
Thank you for the greeting and information,
I look forward to corresponding more in the future.

Jonathan
JonnyX151 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-12-2018, 01:42 PM   #12
Junior Member
 
Name: Jonathan
Trailer: Amerigo F-16 1978?
New Hampshire
Posts: 19
Registry
Hello J Ron,
Thank you for the structural tip I will use that with my window removal the less flexing the more comfortable I will be that the repair area will not crack at the seams!
Thank you for the tips,
I look forward to more construction tips and suggestions on appliances and electrical components.
thank you
Jonathan
JonnyX151 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-13-2018, 10:36 AM   #13
Junior Member
 
Name: Jonathan
Trailer: Amerigo F-16 1978?
New Hampshire
Posts: 19
Registry
Hello Kai in Seattle,


Thank so much for posting those photos. That is exactly what I am about to do along with the front window next to it. I also have many holes and cracks to fill in the gel coat. There is nothing left to mine, I am tempted to take it apart at the seam so I can work on the roof indoors.
I guess in the future I should post my project and progress under the Amerigo category.
I will definitely reference your links thank you for those.
Admittedly I am a little intimidated by the roof, I want to mount an A/C unit up there and install a vent and perhaps a skylight and solar, don't know if I will have room for it all and that layout has to be know before I can even start.
Thank you again for welcoming me to the community.
Jonathan
JonnyX151 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-13-2018, 10:51 AM   #14
Junior Member
 
Name: Jonathan
Trailer: Amerigo F-16 1978?
New Hampshire
Posts: 19
Registry
Hello k corbin,


Aha, thank you for the tip on the Peel-Ply I will definitely be buying that!
As for the ribs, that is a great approach. If I can get the roof layout for an A/C, a vent and possibly a skylight, re enforce the roof, fill in the windows and get the frame and axles repaired and blessed I will be able to focus on the rest.
I also did not know cured epoxy is UV sensitive, I surely would have left that workmanship to degrade in the sun!


Thank you
Jonathan
JonnyX151 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-13-2018, 11:30 AM   #15
Senior Member
 
Kai in Seattle's Avatar
 
Name: Kathleen (Kai: ai as in wait)
Trailer: Amerigo FG-16 1973 "Peanut"
Greater Seattle Metropolitan Area, Washington
Posts: 2,567
Registry
We definitely like the epoxy resin; Paul worked with it even in 45 degree weather outside under his huge tarp, but it was setting up SLOW. He gave up when the temp dropped lower, and resumed in the spring when it was warmer again. We definitely got the exposed epoxy sanded, faired (Bondo hair), re-sanded, washed with dish detergent and then wiped well with acetone and PRIMED before leaving it, however. We even did that with the interior work on floor and walls that would be behind paneling or under the floor. Might as well know what's under there.

What we didn't do, and might well have done if we did it again, was to insulate the trailer. You can get all kinds of lightweight things like that silver foil insulating material, or the bubble-wrap type rolls...we didn't. I relied on the "dead air" behind the paneling to insulate Peanut, and it's okay. I used a double-fleece method of making the window curtain panels that works very well; the windows can be icy but the inside of the curtain panels is warm to the touch. We were trying to spare weight; since Peanut was 2600 pounds fully loaded for a 28-day trip, we kept it well under the 3600 pounds our van can safely tow. But it would be easy to add so many things that it got a lot heavier.

But then I'm funny about that sort of thing.

You don't have to post on a particular Amerigo thread. At least we'll all be notified when you do post. We do love pictures.


In my rebuild thread, you can see how we used pieces of plywood and a 2x4 to gently push the roof/ceiling back up. It took Paul about four days to ease the sagging roof upward to where it looked "about right." Then we made sure to get the uprights installed, the closet walls, the galley side supports holding up the upper cabinet (and hence, the roof) and the front closet niche wall. We call that little front closet the "Putin" for various reasons (it was a joke at the time we first said it) but you can look at it this way, you have something you're not sure where to store? You can put in the front niche. We took the door off it; I kept thinking somehow it would work as a little bathroom, but the floor is shallower than I can grasp even today. The front wall goes away from the Putin making it deeper higher up, and then shallower again...we use the original clothes rod and hooks attached on both sides to hang a large wall pocket and our folding table. Below, we keep the porta-potty, laundry bin, and doggie gate. We have a new wall pocket for Paul's shoes hanging from the belly band inside the Putin now (4 pairs), and we use the back wall for some tin signs.

We used 1/2" plywood for the closet and Putin walls rather than 1/4" ply and framing...we attached closet & Putin walls where the ceiling dictated, it was just too well-engineered to disregard that.

I wanted something fancier for galley supports, but ended up using scraps from our floor, 5/8" marine ply. I've never seen prettier ply (or pricier!). We used that ply and food-safe sealant for the galley top. It has a wood grain that resembles the beach after the tide has receded...and there is also a little "heart" grain right in the middle and sentimentality won out with that. Someday we may cover it with Formica or something else, but for now it's doing fine. I love the marine ply edge; sanded well, it looks like those cookies with all the layers.


Enough about Peanut!


Good luck, talk to you later, always great to watch another amerigo being rescued and loved!


Kai
__________________

__________________
Semper ubi sub ubi.
Kai in Seattle is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Hi I'm Jonathan jonospinach Hi, I am.... 26 03-15-2017 03:37 PM
Jonathan Dickinson State Park, Hobe Sound, Florida Deb&Sam D. Camping, Campout Reports 12 10-25-2013 12:06 PM
Questions regarding Axle from Jonathan Donna D. Towing, Hitching, Axles and Running Gear 10 03-10-2008 07:48 PM

» Upcoming Events
No events scheduled in
the next 465 days.
» Featured Campgrounds

Reviews provided by


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 05:32 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.11
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, vBulletin Solutions Inc.
×