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Old 10-23-2011, 07:35 PM   #1
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Next newbie question

We will probably get a used class A. Not looking for an antique, but don't want to put money into a brand new one to start with. So here goes:

1. When did most companies change from metal sides to fiberglass and or gel?

2. Is it cheaper to repair a metal or glass exterior for a person who has construction experience?

3. Do metal-sided MH's need to be cleaned and waxed as frequently as the glass or gel? (at least 2 times a year from what I've read!)

4. Is it normal for a metal side to look wavy after quite a few years?

I have many more questions, but will try to limit things to 3 - 5 questioins per post. I want to be well informed when we start looking after the start of the year.
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Old 10-23-2011, 07:47 PM   #2
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Hi, Carl and Nancy

Welcome to the forums!

I'll be interested to see if folks can answer your questions- I'm curious about this subject, too.

Good luck!

Francesca
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Old 10-23-2011, 08:08 PM   #3
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I may be way off but if I remember correctly most all MHs built in the last decade or more have fiberglass/gel siding. Generally the ones with full body paint retain the shine better than the ones that don't, and the stripes look good for a long time compared to the vinyl tape ones. The problem with fiberglass/gel is it seems most people don't clean/polish/wax it until it begins to dull, which is a bit too late. That's my take anyway.
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Old 10-23-2011, 11:51 PM   #4
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Thanks Poptop. I guess than that at least twice a year would be the minimum if it is not stored covered or it is used full-time. Is this right?
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Old 10-24-2011, 05:22 AM   #5
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If you buy a MH with full body paint, waxing is just about out the window. My '98 holiday Rambler was clear coated, with the exception of the end caps and top. I waxed with Maguire's "flagship". It is for fiberglass boats, and is good for once a year waxing. It is a great product, but expensive.
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Old 10-24-2011, 06:42 AM   #6
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Most motorhomes went from corugated steel to fiberglass sides many many years ago, The eighties, anyway.
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Old 10-24-2011, 09:58 AM   #7
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Hello again

I was recently surprised to find out that most fiberglass sided rigs are actually fiberglass glued to thin sheets of plywood...
I'd be very, VERY careful about inspecting for delamination in the walls, especially in older units. Not because they're inferior, just because they've been out there longer!
Aluminum sided rigs won't have that problem.

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Old 10-24-2011, 02:35 PM   #8
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Great info from everybody. I am leaning towards a newer rig, but I understand about the problems both ways. The main reason I'm thinking about the fiberglass/gel is that it would be newer and hopefully not near as many parts close to their life expectancy. Having spent 25+ years in QC and QA, I'm very familiar with the bathtub curve and would prefer our newer home would be on the first part of the flat bottom.8-)
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Old 10-24-2011, 06:14 PM   #9
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The other issue to consider is the chassis have improved greatly since the 80's. 06 was another leap in performance.
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