Jayco RV Owners Forum

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Old 04-30-2015, 07:39 PM   #1
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26BH fiberglass or aluminum

Hi. New to the forum. My wife and I are seriously leaning toward purchasing a Jayco for many reasons. We have a dealer 10 min from the house which seems convenient for warranty service and such. We were considering a different trailer 1.5 hours away. We also really like the layout of the Jay Flight 26 BH. The local dealer has 2 in stock. 1 is fiberglass laminated and has a few extras and 1 is the aluminum panels. I have read mixed opinions. Anyone have any experience with this trailer in either build. Good and bad experiences welcome. Thank you.
Hopefully soon to be trailer camper.

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Old 04-30-2015, 08:23 PM   #2
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I have the 2014 264bh Swift which is essentially the same design with the fiberglass. It is heavier than the aluminum as well as more expensive. I like the look of the smooth side and it is very easy to clean. Others on the forum will cite possible delamination issues. So far I have not experienced that. I did have a crack in the front cap that was replaced by Jayco with no questions asked. As far as delamination issues, be sure to check the roof seals to prevent any water leaking into the walls. This would be necessary on an aluminum camper also. Proper maintenance is important with any camper. I didn't want to go with the aluminum because it dents too easily and would be a pain in the rear to wax. Each has their advantages and disadvantages.

I say go with which ever one you like the best. I don't think you will go wrong with either one.

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Old 04-30-2015, 08:38 PM   #3
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Just bought a 26 bhs fiberglass siding a little over a month ago washed it 1x already very easy to clean ...previous camper was aluminum siding had black streaks everywhere that would not come off so my opinion go fiberglass shell
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Old 04-30-2015, 08:47 PM   #4
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Our aluminum sided 26BH is 2 years old and the exterior is holding up well. I put a small scratch in the siding when I backed into a wood post but it's hardly noticeable. If it had been significant, I'd guess the dealer could have replaced part of the siding but on a fiberglass model, a repair like that might be more labor intensive. As for the black streaks, they are there but not that bad. There are a number of commercial cleaners that remove them easily.
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Old 04-30-2015, 09:13 PM   #5
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1) The JayFlight fiberglass option is not the same vacuum bonded panels Jayco touts for the other lines with fiberglass.
2) In JayFlight the fiberglass sides are hung on the same wood frame. Often fiberglass side walls are hung over an aluminum framing. Just pointing it out if you weren't aware and possible care.
3). Black streaks are from the roof, siding has no affect on that.
3b -- not sure why folks think fiberglass is so much easier to clean. I hand wash my aluminum sided TT after every trip, as well I had wax it twice a year. We also have 32' sailboat which is all gelcoat fiberglass and it is a much bigger PIA to wash and wax.

If Jayco would have used the same vacuum bonding process on the JayFlights they have on whitehawk & eagle lines I might consider it. Using Jayco's own claim that vacuum bonding is superior to other processes, then we have accept that the JayFlight uses an inferior process.

The lack of gelcoat or gloss on the JayFlight fiberglass side walls was also a negative for me.
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Old 05-01-2015, 08:46 AM   #6
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I have had a jayco aluminum sided and now have a fiberglass sided. I much prefer the fiberglass.

If you brush up too close to a tree with the aluminum you have a permanent crease whereas with the Fiberglas it is much stronger and you can buff out the scrape.
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Old 05-01-2015, 09:10 AM   #7
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No matter which type of exterior siding, I recommend the Lucas Oil spray wax. It is easy to apply and buffs quickly and easily to a nice shine. But even better, it makes it easy to clean black streaks and bugs. I apply a coat to the front cap before every trip and the bugs wipe away with a damp cloth. It's what the hot-rodders use at car shows. (Ever wonder how they can drive 200 miles to an event and the car looks spotless?!)

I had fiberglass on my Outback. Had delamination bubbles on the upper front cap after about five years - no water intrusion - just heat and the fact the panel was flexed so much. Also - the side that faced the sun in storage lost its shine after about five years, from oxidation. I just got my aluminum sided Jayco and have yet to form an opinion. So far, the black streaks wipe away more easily than on the fiberglass.

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Old 05-01-2015, 11:36 AM   #8
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I have no opinion on the fiberglass as only had aluminum on 4 TTs. Never had an issue cleaning any of these TTs. Only problem I've had is aluminum panels separated on my 1977 Taurus TT which was easy fix, but then this TT sits in the woods as my hunting camp and only gets maintenance when something goes bad (ugly old bugger that I still clean annually)...

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Old 05-01-2015, 11:48 AM   #9
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I really wanted a fiberglass sided trailer for both appearance and ease of cleaning. However, after seeing the front wall of my dad's 2013 trailer completely delaminate from (1) relatively small leak I decided against fiberglass. My dealer also stated that if I was going to keep my trailer more than 5yrs they recommend aluminum too strictly due to costs for repairing delaminated fiberglass. I wish the RV manufactures would step up their game a bit and offer a product that can be exposed to water and not have adverse affects. I believe Azdel is a product being used now that has those qualities but the cost is steep. At some point during any trailer's life a water leak is inevitable but a leak shouldn't mean the owner then has to replace an entire wall. I will stick with ugly, low dent resistance aluminum, for now.
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Old 05-01-2015, 11:52 AM   #10
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I have always had a fiberglass TT but part of my choice was based on the following info from my insurance co. and fellow campers that are insurance adjusters.
1) Insurance rates {at least from quotes I've gotten} are less for fiberglass vs. aluminum TTs, probably based on point 2.
2) aluminum TTs are more prone to hail damage


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