Jump to content

I Love Surplus Outlets!


Recommended Posts

The area in and around Elkhart, Indiana, abounds with dozens of RV manufacturing plants. It is also home to numerous RV surplus outlets where you can find most any part or piece related to RV construction.


We were recently in Goshen, IN, for the F.R.O.G. Rally (Forest River Owner's Group).


Perhaps my favorite activity there is visiting all of the surplus outlets to "see what I can find". I came home with a massive collection of goodies - some for the HDT and some for our camper.


The surplus outlets are an excellent place to look for items useful for converting a HDT to a custom RV Hauler or MotorHome.


Electrical items are always of interest to me. These are often priced way below retail value simply because they are not high demand items for most shoppers.


Here are a few things I picked up that would (will) be great for HDT conversion.


This fuse panel below is made by IOTA. It has 16 fuse positions and red LED's that show when a fuse is blown. The back is pre-wired with both #10 and #12 AWG leads. It cost me $10. I left at least a dozen behind for the next guy.




The PCB board shown below has positions for 11 fused circuits and includes screw-lug connections for both input and output. There is a high current output lug suitable for #8 AWG cable (currently fused with twin 40 amp fuses). It cost me $5.




These are replacement circuit breakers that fit ATC fuse centers. A bag containing 7 assorted values was $3. I snagged several bags.




These SMD LED lights were a perfect replacement fit for the OEM halogen ceiling lights in the rear of our fiver. I had previously replaced the 20W halogen bulbs with LED's but these were twice as bright. My OEM glass lens fit the new LED units. Seven of them set me back $25.




This is just a small sample of what you can find. I left with much more than what I have shown. I especially enjoyed the little outlet garages located in out-of-the-way places often owned by Amish folks that work in the various factories. You need to dig in boxes in these places to find the gold but prices are generally lower than a big outlet like Bontagers. If you are converting a HDT these surplus outlets can prove to be a gold mine. My collection includes switches, relays, wire, other LED lights, assorted screws, vents, slide toppers, finished solid Oak boards (10-1/2 x 36) for custom furniture building, electric awning hardware, 400# generator slides, hydraulic fittings - all for about 20 cents (or less) on the dollar at an RV supply. You can find furniture, appliances, axles, doors, awnings, shades, floor covering, sinks, toilets, complete slide mechanisms, steps, EPDM roof material in large rolls, inverters, converters, toy hauler doors and hinges, adhesives and sealants, windows, trim, paneling, diamond plate, frames, aluminum tubing, wheels and tires - gosh, I am just getting started. Most everything is new overstock or minor scratch and dent. I just wish I had noted this resource before I started building my HDT.


Perhaps my most exciting find/purchase are a pair of new Power Gear hydraulic jacks (one shown below) that retail for around $900 each. I currently have hydraulic slides and front landing jacks that use two separate 12V pumps. My rear stabilizer jacks are (yuck) electric (I hate them!) The Power Gear units will easily bolt directly to my fiver's I-beam behind the wheels (yes, I have fitted them up). Since they are single action/spring return only one hydraulic hose from the existing pump will be needed. I have the needed valve body/solenoid to actuate the fill and return fluid. I also have the control module and remote for an LCI Level-up system that I am considering as an add-on option (also new from surplus). Both jacks were bought for $40 (yes, the pair - not each).





Link to comment
Share on other sites

Randy, I left that stuff just for you. I made a pretty good haul from several of the outlets when we picked up our Cambridge several weeks ago. If i had gotten everything I liked, I would have needed a 53 foot hi-cube trailer behind the camper. It sounds like you might have found some super-secret places that I missed, though. Glad you found some good stuff.....I know you will find a good use for it. Charlie

Link to comment
Share on other sites



HI Randy!

Yep, I love Bontragers and Johnsons but I am always interested in new places. I have started collecting stuff for a Small RV Trailer build. Small like a 6"X 9" utility type build for my Sister-in law and her little dog, light weight and cheap. Max 1500# and $2000. or less,less. I have the single axel

trailer frame, now shopping for the rest.

Good Hunting & HAPPY TRAILS

We hope to see you @ Crossville.



Link to comment
Share on other sites

There is an outlet called D&D Surplus exactly 4.8 miles down CR34 from gate 4 of the Elkhart County Fairgrounds. It is operated by an Amish gentleman and his sons. The facility is off grid (no electricity) and a good flashlight is helpful. Organization of items could be improved but if you dig you can find some nice stuff. I spent hours there and the prices were much lower than Bontagers on identical items. I made multiple trips and even got on a first name basis with the owner and sons. The Amish are extremely independent, resourceful and polite.


Yep - like a kid in a candy store.

Link to comment
Share on other sites



Which direction down CR 34. I need a new map// better map. Fair grounds how far out of town?

Can you take me by the hand, HA?






Make a right out of the fairgrounds, if you pass the 2nd stop sign you went to far. I think it is less the 3 miles and on your right.

Link to comment
Share on other sites


This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

This topic is now closed to further replies.
  • Create New...