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Old 07-18-2017, 07:34 PM   #1
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Fiberglass siding vrs aluminium

Hi! We are new to this forum, and are long time rvers. We are ready to trade our 10 year old Rockwood Ultralite in on a newer model. We have it narrowed down to a Grey Wolf and a Keystone Passport. Because the Passport has fiberglass siding, it would run us about $4K more. Passport is about 350 lbs lighter and we like some features of each better. So is the fiberglass exterior worth the difference, and do we need to worry about delimitation? Thanks for any input.
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Old 07-18-2017, 07:40 PM   #2
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When we were looking at TT's (we bought a Jayco)... the first thing the service guy said to me was it's alot less money to replace an aluminum panel than have someone repair a fiberglass problem... I like the looks, the lighter weight and appearance of the fiberglass.... but we went with the Aluminum and have not regretted it at all.
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Old 07-18-2017, 08:54 PM   #3
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If you live in a hail prone area definitely go with fiberglass.
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Old 07-18-2017, 08:59 PM   #4
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Fiberglass is considered an upgrade, but it is more expensive to repair for sure if you do have issues.

How are you going to use your unit and where are you going to store it? If it's going to be exposed to sun all the time, save your money and go aluminum. If you're going to take care of it and keep it out of the sun, then fiberglass is worth it IMHO.

Basically, unless you're going to keep it outside and abuse it, the fiberglass is a better option IMHO. But I wouldn't turn down an aluminum sided trailer if that's what I wanted. If all else was similar, I wouldn't spend an extra $4k for nothing more than fiberglass siding.
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Old 07-19-2017, 12:25 AM   #5
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Unless things have changed, aluminum skin is also associated with wood framing. Filon can be applied to either wood or aluminum framing.
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Old 07-19-2017, 03:04 AM   #6
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Just an FYI, you can order Grey Wolf with fiberglass. I think it was like a $1800 option.
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Old 07-19-2017, 06:25 AM   #7
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As we was looking around, we had 2 for the decision at the end- the Cherokee 268RKS and the Vibe 268RKS.
The Cherokee, my preference, had aluminum siding, no outside kitchen and was #500 heavier than the Vibe.
the Vibe, my wife's preference, had fiberglass siding, outside kitchen and this nice front cap covering gas bottles and battery.
Other than that, all was the same- they both had residential fridges.
My concerns: Fiberglass weathers by the time and there is also the risk of lamination issues, where the layers start to separate, which actually can only be repaired by replacing the whole panel.
My wife never liked the look of aluminum siding, even though after 10 years, there are usually still no issues.
Fiberglass needs constant waxing and special cleaners and if you scratch it (on a limb of a tree in small driveways on camp grounds in the blue ridge mountains common), you scratch it right away into the fiber. Aluminum- you might have a little dent at the most.
We bought the Vibe, even though it was $3000 more expensive. Because of my wife wanted it. Not that I'm unhappy, I love it and never had the feeling, I made a bad decision. But I still have the weathering and laminate separation in my mind.
I've seen older campers with fiberglass and they seem to be ok. So I will keep on waxing.
Those just some thoughts.
Btw- Aluminum Siding does not necessary mean 2x4 as frame- the new ones already also have aluminum framing.
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Old 07-19-2017, 09:26 AM   #8
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Fiberglass siding vrs aluminium

I have a Passport and have not had any issues with the Fiberglass. I have friends with the aluminum siding and they also haven't had any issues. It basically comes down to personal preference.
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Old 07-19-2017, 10:03 AM   #9
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If you start out without defects, and do maintenance, you'll greatly diminish any chances of hav'n delam.....
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Old 07-19-2017, 10:28 AM   #10
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Hail is a huge issue with aluminum siding. If you don't mind looking at hail damage, which is typically cosmetic, aluminum is ok.

Fiberglass siding is going to help keep the resale value up, compared to aluminum... especially aluminum with hail damage.
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Old 07-19-2017, 10:55 AM   #11
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We've had our KZ Sportsmen Showstopper fo a little over 2 years. Fiberglass sides still look great and no delamination issues. I do wax it at the beginning of the season and keep it covered over winter.
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Old 07-21-2017, 11:36 AM   #12
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My experience has been fiberglass is easier to clean and reseal than the bumpy aluminum. You have to maintain your corner seems on any unit and fiberglass is definitely easier when you reapply any caulk.
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Old 07-23-2017, 10:17 AM   #13
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Were in Colorado,after a major hail storm back in May,im so glad we have fiberglass! We store it in an RV storage yard,everyone was replacing vent covers, exhaust covers,etc. All the aluminum units were severely damaged! Airstreams looked like chrome golf balls. Something to think about.
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Old 07-23-2017, 11:17 AM   #14
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I was there for that storm! Took a picture of this Airstream at a dealer. The fiberglass units at the same dealer just needed plastic roof covers, vents, an light covers like you said.
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