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Old 03-27-2010, 06:21 PM   #1
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Ideas for window protection?

Hello all. We have had our 2007 bc since mid october 2009; have taken it only on a handful of trips and just lost one of our front fixed windows due to rock impact The dealer where we had it replaced said that this was the fourth window they had replaced on separate bcs. My husband and I, up to this point, were hoping this would be a fairly rare occurance; however, with such large windows on the bc I fear this may happen again all too soon. With the repair costing almost $600 this is not a past time I want to repeat any time soon. Anybody have any ideas on a film to cover the exterior of the windows to make them less likely to shatter- more rock resistant or some other idea that hasn't occurred to us? Thanks for the advice!
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Old 03-27-2010, 06:44 PM   #2
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Hello all. We have had our 2007 bc since mid october 2009; have taken it only on a handful of trips and just lost one of our front fixed windows due to rock impact The dealer where we had it replaced said that this was the fourth window they had replaced on separate bcs. My husband and I, up to this point, were hoping this would be a fairly rare occurance; however, with such large windows on the bc I fear this may happen again all too soon. With the repair costing almost $600 this is not a past time I want to repeat any time soon. Anybody have any ideas on a film to cover the exterior of the windows to make them less likely to shatter- more rock resistant or some other idea that hasn't occurred to us? Thanks for the advice!
There are "rockguards" available that protect the front windows.

Andy
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Old 03-28-2010, 08:19 PM   #3
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Fabric covered foam protectors

These have protected our windows perfectly for about 20,000 miles of towing:
http://www.airforums.com/forums/f469...ors-46690.html

Nick.
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Old 03-28-2010, 08:42 PM   #4
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There are "rockguards" available that protect the front windows.
I've never thought of such products for the Basecamp. Got any links showing them?
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Old 04-17-2010, 02:08 PM   #5
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My wife blew a window on her way to Whitehorse last year. We have done a couple of things... the first is a 'Bow Buddy' which keep the front and hopefully the windows from catching rocks off out own truck.

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The next (unfinished) project is we bought some 1/4 inch high-density foam and cut it to the shape of the front windows. We added some black waterproof mesh covering, and now just need to figure out how to attach them. I think I will use the new 3M 'velcro' like material, as it does not use the same fuzzy stuff as velcro, and is supposed to be much stronger. I will get it in black so when we take the covers off it looks nice. This is more to protect the trailer from on-coming rocks...

As for cost... the glass itself is only $100 right from Airstream, and our local glass shop replaced it for another $100. But it also cost me $100 to get the glass shipped here to northern Canada...
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Old 04-17-2010, 05:24 PM   #6
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I wonder if you could make a classy rock guard using "puckboard" - sheets of plastic material that line the boards in hockey rinks. It's moldable for around curves and could likely be held on with velcro or dome fasteners. Puckboard sheets come in Black, blue, yellow, red & white and can be ordered through lumber suppliers.
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Old 04-17-2010, 09:17 PM   #7
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We're going to Alaska this May. Went there in '94 with a Lance truck camper. I have the Rock Tampers. I thinking of attaching the bubble wrap insulation(doubled over) to the front windows, rock guards, and propane tank cover. But you gave me an idea to use the camping insulated sleeping pads. I like any ideas to protect the AS on the trip to AK. I will also slip rubber hose over the propane and brake lines.

Mark
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Old 04-17-2010, 09:49 PM   #8
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We're going to Alaska this May. Went there in '94 with a Lance truck camper. I have the Rock Tampers. I thinking of attaching the bubble wrap insulation(doubled over) to the front windows, rock guards, and propane tank cover. But you gave me an idea to use the camping insulated sleeping pads. I like any ideas to protect the AS on the trip to AK. I will also slip rubber hose over the propane and brake lines.

Mark
After the window broke, my wife used bubble wrap and duct tape for the remainder of the trip. The foam we used were cheap ($10) grey closed-cell foam pads. Don't use open-cell, as it will act like a sponge. Also... on our Basecamp the zip-ties holding the brake cable that crosses over the suspension beam... they all sheared off on rocks. I used bicycle tire tubes to protect the cables. Our drain cap for the sink broke (from rocks)... I want to build some small aluminum guards and just rivet them on in front of the drain and propane outlets as deflectors. Also... seal up the rear vent on the floor... it will let a lot of dust in o a gravel road.
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Old 04-18-2010, 01:57 AM   #9
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I wonder if you could make a classy rock guard using "puckboard" - sheets of plastic material that line the boards in hockey rinks.
I'm not familiar with this material, but one consideration with any such protectors is storage. On arriving at a campground we take the protectors off the windows to enjoy the view and to let in the daylight. Our closed cell foam protectors can be rolled up and placed in a rear storage compartment, where they stay dry, clean, and away from meddlesome fingers. Placing them behind the LPG bottles can work in calm conditions in private areas, but strong winds can blow them away, and dogs seem to find them intertesing. Just another point to consider.
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Old 04-18-2010, 08:15 AM   #10
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I've seen some rockguards made from smoke colored Lexan that work like the metal ones on the regular trailers. I wonder if something similar couldn't be fabricated for the Basecamp? You'd still be able to see through the windows, and the Lexan would deflect most rocks.
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Old 04-18-2010, 12:36 PM   #11
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Thanks Nick for sharing!!

I have a '90 Excella 25 that I have been wanting to protect the windows for some time. Saw Nick's post in '08 and was grateful for the sharing. The only other less expensive way was to hand fabricate a thin lexan or tape up something temporarily.

Nick's foam inserted canvas snapped on made lots of sense. I did note from the Nick's link in post 3 that COArgosy had a good idea of using Motorhome sunscreen material that you can see thru. But it would have to have something inserted in it I believe to offer any rock protection. So to see thru it means removing the foam each time which, like Nick, I don't want to do.

I was looking at the closed foam sleeping pads (great idea BTW) and found most of them only 20" wide by 3/8" thick. Then I found REI's 24" ( Standard Blue Foam Pad - Regular at REI.com ).

My first concern was if the 3/8" thickness would protect from thrown rocks. Nick's experience of 20K miles seems to say so. And I saw this: "Closed cell foam...snip...A disadvantage is they’re a little heavier and they’re not as plush because they don’t compress as easily under pressure."

So DW sews and says they will be easy to make. Thinking light gray canvas 'seat cover' material would look good. The lift-a-dot or the 'common sense' twist-type fastener from SailRite is the way to go. Nick, it the four fasteners per window holding well?

Any others have any experience doing this??

Steve in Sav'h
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Old 04-18-2010, 04:00 PM   #12
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The lift-a-dot or the 'common sense' twist-type fastener from SailRite is the way to go. Nick, it the four fasteners per window holding well?
Steve, the fasteners are still holding perfectly. These are the same fasteners that hold the spray-hood on our sea-going sailing yacht. Thus they are very strong, and corrosion resistant. Stainless steel 316 grade is what I always try for. I fixed the female parts first to the covers, and then fitted the male parts to the trailer, marking their positions one at a time when the covers were well stretched by hand, ensuring a good tight, wrinkle-free fitting, as you can see in the photo.
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Old 04-18-2010, 07:43 PM   #13
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Nick,

That's a good idea to mark them one at a time after installing the female part to get it tight. Sounds like that is how to keep the air from ripping them off at 60mph.

In all the years I've been watching the forum, I'm surprised that only a scant few have mentioned doing this mod if you didn't have the luck to have bought the coach with the metal ones already installed!

I guess your foam is roughly 3/8" thick as well. I'm going to start ordering the materials. Thanks for watching the thread.

Steve
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Old 04-19-2010, 01:22 AM   #14
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You don't need to get too thick on the foam... the real issue is taking that initial sharp hit from the rock away... if you've ever tried to break a car window with your hand you'll understand the strength of tempered glass. If you've ever used a punch or a spark plug to break that same window... you'll understand the weakness.

I'll put a photo up of my pads... just ordered 50 yards (!) of 3M "dual lock" as I want to use it for both the window pads, and to seal the sides of the tent to the camper as well. The foam I got was the cheapo sleeping pad, grey closed cell... either at Wal-mart or Canadian Tire...

If there every is a Basecamp 2.0, I'd like to be on the design team. It was so good, but could have been so much better...
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