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Old 12-01-2012, 02:44 PM   #1
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Fiberglass vs Aluminum

Seeking everyone's opinion and comments on Fiberglass vs Aluminum. I'm considering buying a new 5th wheel TH that ia Aluminum. The TH I have now is Fiberglass. Is one better than the other?? Thanks

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Old 12-01-2012, 03:47 PM   #2
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you don't have to worry about the sun degrading the aluminum.....
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Old 12-01-2012, 04:01 PM   #3
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You'll never be faced with Delamination issues with the aluminum...
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Old 12-01-2012, 04:12 PM   #4
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Generally speaking.
Fiberglass + Hail = No problem
Aluminum + Hail = The Daily Double
Ding Ding Ding Ding Ding Ding Ding
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Old 12-01-2012, 05:00 PM   #5
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Fiberglass can delaminate if not kept sealed at window and vent openings. My father-in-laws old Winnebago had aluminum that developed pitting and holes, I don't know if it was electrolysis with aluminum contacting steel or what. Fiberglass allows for smooth panels while most aluminum skins (except for Airstream) are usually rolled with ridges to add strength.
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Old 12-01-2012, 07:42 PM   #6
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we're talking about sidewalls right?? well unless it's hailing sideways....it won't be a problem with aluminum.

Aluminum. I've had both, Aluminum wins hands down. Not saying that fiberglass is junk, but hust think about how fiberglass units are put together....given the choice, it's a no brainer. Plus you can actually remove and fix aluminum panels with relative ease.
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Old 12-01-2012, 07:50 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BFlinn181 View Post
Fiberglass allows for smooth panels while most aluminum skins (except for Airstream) are usually rolled with ridges to add strength.
Huh? I've never seen anything but flat aluminum. It usually has some overlaps at sheet edges, otherwise it's flat. On toyhaulers it's usually a clear plastic protector over a white plastic coating over .040-.060 sheet laminated to 1/8-1/4 inch plywood.

Unless it's a laminated fiberglass sidewall over pllywood like motorhomes, Toyhauler fiberglass is frequently corrugated siding.
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Old 12-02-2012, 10:16 AM   #8
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Thanks everyone for your comments. I appreciate it, man I love this forum!
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Old 12-02-2012, 11:55 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VanDiemen23 View Post
Huh? I've never seen anything but flat aluminum. It usually has some overlaps at sheet edges, otherwise it's flat.


Not just Ripples have ridges.
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Old 12-02-2012, 11:59 AM   #10
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Quote:
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Not just Ripples have ridges.
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Old 12-03-2012, 01:42 AM   #11
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I've had both and love the fiberglass. Easier to maintain and hail damage is far less a concern.
We had a MH damaged, almost beyond repair, by hail. The metal siding bent, tore and leaked. It was eventually repaired. Then sold.
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Old 12-03-2012, 04:47 AM   #12
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In my opinion, Fiberglass wins hands down.

Delamination can happen if the fiberglass isn't bonded to anything strong, like an "composite" material - Compositek, Azdel, etc. If fiberglass is simply laminated to a luan (wood) backing, there's where you're getting into trouble in my opinion.

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Old 12-03-2012, 10:07 AM   #13
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that Compositek is awesome. But the reality is many (if not most) manufacturers are still putting their fiberglass over a wood type product. Plus unless you have full-body paint, gel-coat is a bit of a pain in the butt. When it gets dull, it's not nearly as easy to restore as conventional paint.
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