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Old 08-07-2013, 07:43 AM   #1
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Bollard Encounter

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While trying to get out of a tight gasoline pump location, I received a "trailer pivot education" The damage is the result. We are staying at TOG in Helen GA. This is a 2012 still under warranty. Should I tackle the replacement or let a dealer handle? The bumper was torn off, but can be repaired (bent at one spot). The storage compartment lid needs some attention. The pump bollard I hit was plastic, not metal, so damage was reduced.
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Old 08-07-2013, 07:47 AM   #2
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Wow! You have my sympathies; what a painful way to learn. Someone told me to plan your exit to gas stations before entering and it's something I try to do every time. Hope you can get it fixed up OK.
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Old 08-07-2013, 08:17 AM   #3
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I would file this one as "that's what insurance is for". I suspect you are looking at a $3-$5k repair.

No way I would attempt a repair on a trailer this new.

Also, I can almost guarantee the bollard you hit was a steel pipe with concrete and a plastic cover.

Sorry for your bad luck
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Old 08-07-2013, 08:27 AM   #4
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I think that is a dealer repair Stan unless you are an Airplane mechanic. Go ahead and put the bumper back on if you feel it won't fall off. I know that is heart breaking to hurt your baby like that. Good luck with the repairs. I would ask them to pull the inside panels and buck rivet if it was mine.

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Old 08-07-2013, 10:47 AM   #5
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Thanks Perry. I will be glad when I no longer am a rookie, and can start on second year mistakes. Obviously if someone who is doing what you are doing would not try a DIY repair, then I have no business attempting it. I know wood and glass, not aluminum. Thanks for your support.
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Old 08-07-2013, 10:56 AM   #6
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Sent a PM to my dealer Rick Foley, who has proven he takes care of his customers.
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Old 08-07-2013, 04:08 PM   #7
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Ouch! Having had panel damage on my 2012, I know how you feel. The good news is that your dealer can replace the panel/bumper and it'll look like new again. You most definitely want this done by a pro. After all it is still a new trailer. I am very picky about filling stations as many of them don't provide adequate space for me to fill, pull forward and turn with clearance for a 28 footer (I can't imagine 34 feet -- that would be a truck stop....). I make it a point -- particularly if I'm on an interstate -- to get off at exits that have multiple filling stations so I can do a survey and pick the pump that provides the easiest in and out. Soon, I'll be pulling with a diesel, so this may either mean truck stops or more issues as there are a lot fewer diesel pumps than gas. AARGGH!
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Old 08-07-2013, 04:20 PM   #8
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Sizing up a gas station is an art. I will pay more to find a place that is safe to get in and out of. Sometimes you don't have a choice. If worse comes to worse, go to a parking lot, unhitch and then drive to the gas station without the trailer. Crowds contribute to accidents because you get jammed in and everyone is impatient. It is amazing what people will go through to save .$10 on gas. I remember on one exit there were cars backed up to the street where gas was cheap. On the other side of the street, it was a little higher but I could get in and out easy. Peace of mind cost me a few dollars. The gas stations where the pumps head toward the store are always the ones I pass by. I did drag my tail one time in FL. Took about 1/4" off the frame rails but no damage other than that.

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Old 08-07-2013, 04:41 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MrUKToad View Post
Wow! You have my sympathies; what a painful way to learn. Someone told me to plan your exit to gas stations before entering and it's something I try to do every time. Hope you can get it fixed up OK.
That's good advise UK Toad - I generally do make sure I have a good escape route before pulling in for gas - even to the point of parking short of the gas station and walking over to check things out before pulling in with the trailer if need be.

It is worse with a diesel, because it isn't always that easy to see which pumps have diesel!

Now that I'm a bit more proficient at handling the length of the trailer, I don't worry quite so much as I figure I can always back out if I have to!



Incidentally - I too caused a couple thousand $ damage to our AS just as we were leaving Ontario for Florida a few winters ago.

I pulled into a service centre on the 401 near Woodstock Ont.

There had just been a big snowstorm and snow was piled everywhere in the service centre and access to the pumps was very restricted due to only preliminary ploughing having been done.

When making a sharp 90 degree turn with high snow banks all around to get to the pumps, I could see in my mirrors that the curbside corner was in danger of touching snow.

It looked light and fluffy so I figured it would not be a problem - wrong - there was a massive concrete curb hidden under a few inches of the fluffy stuff!

After surveying teh damage and nearly crying, I was so p*ssed off I nearly turned around and headed for home!

Luckily, "Mrs Wingeezer" always more optimistic and in better spirits than grumpy old "Wingeezer" pointed out that we could easily detour via Jackson centre - that is what we did! Arrived there Sunday afternoon in snow and camped in their campground. No one else there, but luckily they power was on!

The AS steps were badly bent and inoperative, the painted lower panels forward of the steps were damaged beyond repair as was the stainless stone guard, and gas lines were ripped off under the trailer!

We lost a day of our vacation trip and my wallet was somewhat lighter when we left JC, but they took us in right away under the circumstances, did a good job and, the rest of our Florida trip was great!

I learned my lesson to be more careful and not to use brute force and four wheel drive to man handle the trailer!

Brian
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Old 08-07-2013, 04:51 PM   #10
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I never knew those posts had a name. Whatever it is called, and it may be modified by a 4 letter word right after the moment of impact, it is a bummer.

Don't bother with the bumper—you will save nothing because the total repair will cover the deductible and more. If it is bent, it may have to be replaced. It is really hard to get creases out of metal. The labor costs more than the bumper.

It may be closer to $3 K than $5 K. It is a small panel and most of the cost will be labor. Our former dealer backed our trailer into another one and had to replace the rear center panel. This was a bad, bad dealership, but they did do this repair right and you can't tell it was damaged.

Sometimes there's no way out except backing out once you get yourself to the pumps. You can't always tell when you spot a station. I once had to back onto a busy narrow street near Banff while avoiding a dumpster and parked cars. I needed gas badly and couldn't tell whether I could get past the pumps once we filled up. The station was crammed between buildings, was the only one for many miles, and I had to go there. Another time cars were lined up all around me and the drivers looked very nervous as I slowly backed out—I had only owned the trailer a few weeks at the time and their fear equalled mine. A lot of truck stops have small areas around the gas pumps, so sometimes the only benefit for going there is cheaper gas and they sell propane cheaper than campgrounds.

Dwell', at least you've christened it. Tree limbs will scratch it and campgrounds have all sorts of things to damage an RV. The rock guards will get dings and paint will flake off the tongue. A fair number have dents in the top rear panels from backing into a space too far and hitting a big tree limb. We have a long scratch on the side we think was done by a deer trying to get the velvet off his new rack.

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Old 08-07-2013, 06:48 PM   #11
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This is the reason I installed an auxiliary tank in the back of my truck. Worst experience I've had is gas stations - they are not made for trailers! With auxiliary tank I can get 1500 miles and thus can start looking for a easy pull-trough truck stop when I get down to 500 miles or so of gas.
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Old 08-07-2013, 08:34 PM   #12
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I would need a 120 gallon gas tank (minimum) to go that far. My tank holds 26. Let's see, one gallon of gas weighs around 6.2 pounds, so hauling 120 gallons would be 744 pounds. What do you tow with Silver Hawk, a Mack Truck???
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Old 08-07-2013, 09:07 PM   #13
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Old 08-07-2013, 09:32 PM   #14
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Dwellstream, Now that you have that out of the way, you can go about having a relaxing time getting there and camping. Take it straight to the dealer and don't worry. He knows exactly how to repair it like new. 3 panels and a bumper, my guess is 6K. Hope you have insurance. And you are not part of an exclusive club since almost all of us have had a few dings, ok, big dents, but apparently, that's how we are programmed to learn. Works for me, sort of. Jim
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