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Chad&Jen

Remodeling Older Fifth Wheel

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Back in 2011- 2014, I gutted and built-out a 2008 Victory Lane toy hauler for us to full-time in. I loved that it was designed specifically to fit our needs instead of the other way around. We'll be at ECR and would be happy to talk and show photos. It's not for the faint-at-heart!

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3 hours ago, ctsedlak said:

Back in 2011- 2014, I gutted and built-out a 2008 Victory Lane toy hauler for us to full-time in. I loved that it was designed specifically to fit our needs instead of the other way around. We'll be at ECR and would be happy to talk and show photos. It's not for the faint-at-heart!

We will definitely take you up on that.  We are prepared for the stress of a remodel and more determined than ever to find someone with experience to oversee the project with us.

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5 hours ago, ctsedlak said:

Back in 2011- 2014, I gutted and built-out a 2008 Victory Lane toy hauler for us to full-time in. I loved that it was designed specifically to fit our needs instead of the other way around. We'll be at ECR and would be happy to talk and show photos. It's not for the faint-at-heart!

Had the car wrapped.

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Please think positive thoughts...it will get done before the rally, it will get done before the rally, it will get done before the rally.....

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paint is getting close, stove should arrive on Tuesday, refrigerator arrives on 15th, every countertop place in middle TN is saying they are 8-12 weeks out. Might have to drive to NC to get a countertop on way to ECR. Truma hot water heater install morning of 22nd in Knoxville. Nah, we are not cutting it close......

 

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Which stove did you decide on?  I think you will be very happy with the Truma water heater.  Are they going to be able to install the recirculation feature with your remodel?  They don't typically do it on a straight aftermarket swap due to the plumbing changes needed, but with a full remodel it should be much simpler.

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we went with the Fisher Paykel unit for the four burners and the larger oven. Also, my wife had spent some time with the Springfield family that has the spacecraft trailer and they have this same range and it has been working well for them for a few years with similar baking needs. 

They initially told me that the recirc feature was not available. I'll have to ask. 

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I am anticipating what the finished product will look like.  While we on are the same path, using a 2004 Newmar Kountry Aire as the foundation for our remodeling, having to go back to "WORK" has put the project lower on the list. The concepts you presented have given me some ideas as to the new direction.  Originally it was just a lightweight facelift, but now, esp since I realize that I have a solid foundation to work on(Newmar), I am considering more extensive changes to give us what we REALLY want. 

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1 hour ago, rpsinc said:

I am anticipating what the finished product will look like.  While we on are the same path, using a 2004 Newmar Kountry Aire as the foundation for our remodeling, having to go back to "WORK" has put the project lower on the list. The concepts you presented have given me some ideas as to the new direction.  Originally it was just a lightweight facelift, but now, esp since I realize that I have a solid foundation to work on(Newmar), I am considering more extensive changes to give us what we REALLY want. 

 

Be careful, the DW wants list at the start have snowballed, "well since we have it ripped apart anyway...." :) And I mistakenly outsourced the painting to start. Now we are redoing it the right way. And I've been traveling like a maddog for work, so that's not helping. It will get done, it will get done, positive thoughts, positive thoughts.....

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I feel you.  I am a contractor, so she often can add that I have the tools and skills to do anything.  Well, we've owned the coach for almost 2 years and the only done is the flooring, which we are going to redo because we dont really like it.  And that is just the first item on the list.  I also have a Big Foot system, a new 1000W solar system, a roof to do, new satellite system, service and maintenance, and the biggest is to repair the peeling and flaking clear coat on the exterior.  These are all within my wheel house of skills but time is working against me, as I too am working like a mad man!!

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comes a point where you have the weigh the time factor and cost associated. I tend to outsource more the older I get, even if I have the skillset to do it. However, I also know I can do a better job than some, so I like to do things myself. But, if I don't have the time, and it has to be done, bite the bullet and outsource it. Sometimes it comes back to bite me, like the paint, so it is getting done right now and I am thrashing to get everything done in time for the ECR. It won't be completely done, but should be done enough to camp for a week. Might be cooking on the grill and microwave only though. Countertops, who would've thunk there is a countertop shortage (actually all the new construction around, no one wants to mess with a "cheap, small job" like the Teton.

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On April 6, 2017 at 8:39 AM, rpsinc said:

I am anticipating what the finished product will look like.  While we on are the same path, using a 2004 Newmar Kountry Aire as the foundation for our remodeling, having to go back to "WORK" has put the project lower on the list. The concepts you presented have given me some ideas as to the new direction.  Originally it was just a lightweight facelift, but now, esp since I realize that I have a solid foundation to work on(Newmar), I am considering more extensive changes to give us what we REALLY want. 

We are going to start the remodel on our 05 38' RLPK this summer after the WCR. 

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Paint is finally done, floors are going in. The range is here, the cabinet is cut out, need fitting for the gas hose. Refrigerator cabinet is cut out for a residential refrigerator. Supposed to be delivered on Thursday. I cut insulation board and filled in the refrigerator vent holes, then I used heat shield insulation on the entire back wall of the refrigerator compartment as well as on the walls behind the range. 

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We may have found countertops, whether or not they can get installed before ECR, and if I can get the floor done, range installed, refrigerator arrives and installed, tires and wheels, put on, etc. before ECR is probably not going to happen. We might be there just in the truck again. The thrash continues. 

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By the way there is a sold listing on RVOnline for a 38' Newmar.  It was a good deal and well laid out with lots of xtras.  Also there was another Newmar for sale in the members
 
 
the unit you are referring to is sitting next to me at our home park. The unit belongs to my dad and I just finished going through it and redoing and replacing, spent 6 months getting it ready for them to us and then they decided they were to old to go RVing anymore. If you want to know what was done to it just PM me. 

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Having helped in the building of 3 54' boats I can feel your pain. Seeing the pictures looks just like the interior of a boat. The 1st boat took 3 years! and 300k. Not my boat or my money. But once  it's done what a beauty. So keep the faith and keep plugging away. It's looking great. And you will know it's done right!      Pat

 

 

The Old Sailor

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16 hours ago, JPL said:

Having helped in the building of 3 54' boats I can feel your pain. Seeing the pictures looks just like the interior of a boat. The 1st boat took 3 years! and 300k. Not my boat or my money. But once  it's done what a beauty. So keep the faith and keep plugging away. It's looking great. And you will know it's done right!      Pat

 

 

The Old Sailor

If this takes more than 3 more weeks to get moved in, my wife will leave me, and if it takes $300k, I should've just had NH Or Spacecraft build it. :)

At least I know it will have been done right. Still lots to do and we'll have things to do once we move in, but the bones are good and we are excited to get going.

 

 

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Your in progress pics look like my Newmar right now.  Just got back from work 22 hours in 2 days and driving 400+ miles in the work truck to get that done.  Boy, I need a break, but that isnt in the cards right now.  So we just keep on truckin'.  Oh wow, am I dating myself??

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If you want durability stay away from Lippert frames.  Mine broke, as have others.  Ended up building a new frame around the existing frame with many feet of 1/4" thick 2" square steel along with added cross members and a beefed up pin box support.   Fortunately, Forest River Cedar Creek paid Lippert to add all the additional steel at no cost to me.  Frame is now like a tank.

My biggest concern of putting a lot of money into an older trailer when doing upgrades is the way insurance companies value them.  While I have many thousands of dollars added to ours it is still a 2010 according to NADA and it depreciates every year.  No way I could currently replace it with something truly of equal value in today's market.  Rocky's recent experience with an insurance company when he had roof damage from hail storms was a real eye opener about how we vs. insurance value our trailers.  I have not been able to find an insurer that will agree to a "stated value" coverage like I have on my now antique car.

Sorry to say I am no fan of double pane windows.  I consider them a mistake in a trailer.  My reasoning goes something like this:  Framing is aluminum.  Exterior walls are lauan plywood overlaid with Corning glossy white laminate that has the lauan side glued to the aluminum frame.  Insulation is fiberglass batting.  Inside the walls are lauan plywood with the exposed or living side either covered with a vinyl wall paper or painted.  The other side facing the "dead space" between the two wall surfaces is simply lauan plywood.  There is no vapor barrier as part of the insulation in a trailer as we find in a stick built residence.

The interior space of an occupied trailer will have very high humidity in cool to cold weather.  Moisture from the bathroom, kitchen, breathing, laundry, propane and more will cause the cold single pane glass windows to become covered with dew-like water beads from condensation.  It is a PITA to wipe them down with a towel when they become saturated but, it is a necessary evil.  Switch to double pane windows and the high humidity will not condense on the now warmer glass.  But, the humidity is still there.  It migrates through openings in the interior wall around electrical outlets, switch outlets, butt joints, etc. and condenses inside the wall where lauan plywood is used.  The result can be mold or wood rot.  Yes, the trailer may stay warmer and you don't have to wipe windows but the moisture has to go somewhere if it does not condense on cold glass.

We have single pane (or pain) windows. I added a dehumidifier in our trailer with a drain line through the floor.  When it is cold, especially cold and rainy and condensation begins to form on the window glass we turn it on and it pumps gallons of water out of the trailer leaving the windows dry.  We usually think of using dehumidifiers in the summer, not winter, but in a trailer this opposite is valid.  Heavy roller shades can cover the windows in our trailer to keep cold from radiating.  So, think twice before putting double pane windows in.  You may be solving one problem to cause another.

Edited by RandyA
spelling error

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From the perspective of insurance, your position is similar with any vehicle as well.  They depreciate.  I think that there is also coverage available for replacement value but not really sure how that works in practice.

I do know that part of my decisionmaking process when making improvements to my rig, is what is the right thing for us and what ROI do we expect.  At some point, it doesnt make sense to keep doing improvements but rather only do maintenance.  But that bring said, with the comments here and elsewhere about the quality of the NEW units being built and sold, not sure that is a viable option either.  So, we have a quandry.  And we each must make the decision that makes us satisfied.  And that will be unique to each of us, as unique individuals.

Thanks for sharing your position.

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RandyA, thanks for bringing up the topic of insurance.  I never considered that angle.  Buying an older unit and putting considerable dollars into a remodel only to find out that you're covered for a fraction of your total outlay if anything happens is a real concern.  

Has anyone else dealt with this issue specifically when sourcing insurance for an upgraded fiver?  A stated value policy would be ideal, but maybe there are alternatives that provide at least marginally more coverage than just book value.  

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What about the angle that is used for classic cars/motorcycles/boats that have been restored.  Some ultra rare cars from the teens or earlier are insured for their value based on some agreed upon dollar value.  There has to be a way to find that path to cover the real value of a coach, though, older as to its model year but in excellent condition compared to others comparable.

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3 hours ago, rpsinc said:

What about the angle that is used for classic cars/motorcycles/boats that have been restored.  Some ultra rare cars from the teens or earlier are insured for their value based on some agreed upon dollar value.  There has to be a way to find that path to cover the real value of a coach, though, older as to its model year but in excellent condition compared to others comparable.

That can definitely be done, at least in the US. (I have no idea about insurance in Canada...)  It requires a little more legwork to put in place, especially if you already own the rig or are trying to insure it for more than purchase price.  Even if you're just buying it, sometimes an appraisal and/or inspection will still be required.

On 4/17/2017 at 0:10 PM, RandyA said:

I have not been able to find an insurer that will agree to a "stated value" coverage like I have on my now antique car.

Randy--be careful with terminology there.  Usually what you're after is agreed value, not stated value.  Agreed value is where you agree on the value in advance.  Stated value is more of a one-way, "here's what I think my vehicle is worth" policy.

3 hours ago, Chad&Jen said:

RandyA, thanks for bringing up the topic of insurance.  I never considered that angle.  Buying an older unit and putting considerable dollars into a remodel only to find out that you're covered for a fraction of your total outlay if anything happens is a real concern.  

Has anyone else dealt with this issue specifically when sourcing insurance for an upgraded fiver?  A stated value policy would be ideal, but maybe there are alternatives that provide at least marginally more coverage than just book value.  

Not an upgraded fiver in my case, but a motorhome (truck conversion) that shows a book value far below anything reasonable.  Agreed value was easy within the first year of ownership for the purchase price, but shopping around after that transaction was a little older required an appraisal.  Even just with a normal actual cash value policy, you have to pay attention to the rating basis.  That's written into the policy essentially as a "not to exceeed" limit in the event of a total loss.  That can be a little simpler to get the policy in place, but still leaves you vulnerable to a cash value much less than that.  Of course, an appraisal can be useful there again as independent documentation of what the vehicle was, and what it was worth at some prior point in time.  If you disagree with the insurance company's valuation, there's usually a defined process for both parties to do an appraisal and then pay a referee to sort out the differences.  If you already have the appraisal, usually you can pre-empt that process (which is typically going to be north of $1000 for you out-of-pocket).

3 hours ago, rpsinc said:

What about the angle that is used for classic cars/motorcycles/boats that have been restored.  Some ultra rare cars from the teens or earlier are insured for their value based on some agreed upon dollar value.  There has to be a way to find that path to cover the real value of a coach, though, older as to its model year but in excellent condition compared to others comparable.

That would be an agreed value policy.  They're not too hard to come by, and I would think they'd be even easier than they are given that such a policy would make for fairly simple actuarial work and do away with the most time-consuming part of a total loss claim.  The legwork is all in justifying the value that you want to insure for.

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On ‎2017‎-‎04‎-‎15 at 9:27 PM, Heavymetal said:
 
By the way there is a sold listing on RVOnline for a 38' Newmar.  It was a good deal and well laid out with lots of xtras.  Also there was another Newmar for sale in the members
 
 
the unit you are referring to is sitting next to me at our home park. The unit belongs to my dad and I just finished going through it and redoing and replacing, spent 6 months getting it ready for them to us and then they decided they were to old to go RVing anymore. If you want to know what was done to it just PM me. 

I saw both of those units an mentioned one or both earlier.  Both looked like a great buy and seemed in good shape with lots of xtras.

 

Also how do you plan to hold the fridge in place??

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