Basically the title. I recently acquired a 12' Jet slide in camper. For those that are curious the camper brand was made in Utah in the 60's, they made Shasta-esq trailers and truck campers. The truck campers are almost impossible to find pictures of online sadly and I've only seen 3 in the 5 years i've been looking. Anyway I bought it $400 and have come to find that the front two corners are rotted to hell and will need to be redone. I've done minor wood work with my dad on some trailers but how do I even begin with a slide in camper?
Also the thing is easily the heaviest camper I have actually seen in person. The gmc sierra 2500 it was on was definitely strained. I'm worried improper repair will result in it falling over or caving to its own weight. I am new to all this and will appreciate any and all input
What you have is basically a vintage camper without wheels. It uses the truck wheels instead... Truck campers do tend to be very heavy and the corners are important to support the jacks. I've seen them collapse more than once.
So, what you have to do is take it apart, fix it, and put it back together. If it is the usual stick and tin construction, that is accomplished by removing the skins and roof, then repairing the structure. You will have the opportunity to possibly build a lighter frame but the corner should still be beefy. (aluminum studs?)
A riveted bodied camper is repaired a little differently but I'd have to see the structure before giving advice, as I've never rebuilt one.
I would love to post pictures but its very dark here when i put all this together and should be able to get pictures by Friday afternoon or so. So i take off the sheeting on the sides and then just plug-out and plug in wood as needed?
Sort of. Taking the sheeting off entails tedious nail and staple picking. Remove the trim, then the roof/front/rear metal. You may have to rebuild a whole side and especially the overhang portion. Once you get the skins off, you'll see what needs to be done.