RoyB, I'm anxious to see what you actually shake out for your upgrade(s). Be sure and post pictures of the progress and even any plans or drawings you come up with.
I am living vicariously through others' as life right now has put a halt to my own upgrades and mods. I seriously think camping (one of our favorite things to do) is in jeopardy this year. Only time will tell.
Having a similar floor plan highwall (HW) minus the slide, I can tell you my experience has been that I actually pack less than when I had a normal height PUP. It doesn't seem like that should be the case, but maybe it had everything to do with my method of moving my PUP gear from the old one to the new one:
Do not put it in the new PUP if I haven't actually used it, EVER, or even if not recently.
I ended up with a pile of gear in the corner of my garage that didn't make it into the HW.
Additionally, we decided to take advantage of more of the built-in items of the HW, so we actually use the inside stove for a fair amount of cooking, other than bacon and other meats - those still get, cooked outside on a single-burner Coleman (reduction in size and weight). We use the RV-Que that came with the HW and uses the existing LP tanks instead of bringing along a grill and a set of extra tank(s) for it, and so forth. It's small things that add up in big ways.
It really boils down to what you want to do and where do you want to do it. There are those who will never cook inside and will chose to bring along all that is required for outdoor cooking. That's fine. Everything is a trade-off. At this point, I'm opting for less stuff to have to manage and move around without really sacrificing much of the outdoor experience. We spend most of our time outdoors, eat outdoors and play outdoors, but we certainly have the benefit of managing less stuff and being able to fully utilize the equipment that comes with the PUP to its full potential, as we choose, and as others choose to or not to use.
One qualitative way I can measure this is the amount of stuff we place in the PUP's isle when towing. With the previous PUP, we used to fill it up full and hang the kids bikes off of some place on the TV or PUP.
Now, the isle is filled with the kids bikes, four camp chairs, an extra step stool because I did an axle over/under conversion and maybe the jerry can when we are not camping with water hookups. That's it.
The reasons for this are two-fold: 1) we have less stuff because we utilize more of the onboard systems, 2) with the extra length and height of this larger HW PUP, there is more onboard storage and while remaining true to #1, everything has a place that is out of the way. Thankfully, I have many compartments that are mostly empty and even one main deep drawer that is completely empty.
You most certainly can overload a PUP and especially a HW because of the extra storage afforded. Always give careful thought to what you put into a PUP for weight and usability reasons.
Two things come to mind, Eternabond and Dicor Self-Leveling Lap Sealant (the caulk you get from RV repair shops).
I have used both on my roof. I have Etenrabond running along the seams of the roof and it is quite suited for that. The Eternabond would work over any of the holes caused by hail.
However, I punctured the roof on my PUP and chose to fill the holes with Dicor to fill the indentation up to the level of the rest of the roof surface. While I will keep an eye on both the seams and these little holes, I do not anticipate any future problems.
Surface prep is EVERYTHING for any and all products. Don't just squirt some silicone up there and think it will be good. You are on the right track in seeking answers. But one or more products can be the right answer depending on the particulars of the problem areas.
So, yes, an appropriate answer would be "it depends". Pictures would definitely be helpful.
I am sorry that I don't have that information. I don't own one. Even so, it could vary within a given year from model to model. You would need to get the owner to measure that for you on level ground with the PUP leveled.
There's a good *chance* that you will need to drop the hitch down a bit. With that cargo deck and slightly higher than normal profile (since it appears to be somewhat "offroad"), it might be close but I think you'll be nose high on the PUP.
The tops of the bunk ends are vinyl. It will feel like plastic on the outside (has a slight leather-like texture) but look like woven plastic fabric on the inside. The sides are indeed Sunbrella.
While I am not familiar with the performance or other aspects of that product, looking at the details/specs, Type B is what you want.
Once fabrics no longer maintain water repellency on their own, you can use 303's High Tech Fabric Guard, found here.
I just did this on my Fleetwood's Sunbrella, which is a woven fabric and is in fact specified for use by Fleetwood and Sunbrella for restoring and maintaining canvas and other materials water proof.
Unlike other products, this will not affect the breathability of the canvas and does not suffer many of the undesirable effects of silicone based waterproofers.
The trick I found when applying it and not having overspray is to gently pull the trigger on the spray bottle, slowly and steadily.
I had a good validation of its effectiveness when I was interrupted during application and had a rain the following day. I was half-way through a panel when I had to stop. The half without HTFG was wet, wicking moisture into it but not all the way through it, as you would expect canvas or similar material to perform. The section that had the 303 HTFG had water balling up on the outside with no signs of absorbing any moisture at all, shedding it at the slightest bump but it still is breathable. I was convinced and am now thinking about using it on my tent, my rain ponchos (fabric), etc.
The downside - it is expensive. I went through four 16 oz. bottles at $15 ea. from my local Ace Hardware. I bought out their stock and had them order another bottle so I could finish. But now I have every confidence that the material sections will not leak.
On the vinyl sections, I had previously used 303's Aerospace Protectant and those sections look brand new and have UV protection for a couple of months.
For me ,to get a new axle, brake controller(which I hate the thought of mounting in my vehicle), battery and mounting and all the wiring and my time, I think I will stick with what is working now.
This is the kind of thinking that gets us in trouble more often than not. It's the times when it all goes wrong and I don't have all of the safety or backup equipment I need that is the worst kinds of situations. It is similar to insurance - you never expect to need it but when you do, you are thankful you DO have it. The big difference here is that having or not having insurance generally does not affect other people in the heat of the moment. Having or not having trailer brakes CAN harm other people beyond the occupants of our TVs.
As for what brake setup you need, you will have to verify the model number and subsequent capacity of the axle. There's a better than good chance that it is a Dexter axle. It should have a label on the axle tube, often on the top side of the axle tube. My guess is that it is a 3,500 pound axle. If so, the appropriate kit for you would be a 10" assembly, Dexter Brake Assemblies PDF, K23-454-00 and K23-455-00 but verify, along with a hub-drum kit if your hub does not already have an integrated drum, Hub PDF, like K-08-247-94. Again, verify all of these are the proper items for your particular set up.
See https://www.etrailer.com/dept-pg-Trailer_Brakes-sf-Electric_Drum_Brakes.aspx for a list of brake parts. Since my hubs already have drums, I just needed the 10" LH and RH brake assemblies (Code 23-26 and 23-27 respectively, $36 each). If you need hubs with drums, see http://www.etrailer.com/dept-pg-Trailer_Hubs_and_Drums.aspx
Add to it a break-away switch (if you have a PUP battery already) for $7-$10, or one with a dedicated battery ($30-$50), brake controller like a Prodigy P2 and appropriate wiring.
With all of that above, you're about $325 with shipping plus misc. supplies.
If I hadn't sold my first PUP before realizing the importance of trailer brakes, I would have added them, and it was a relatively light weight trailer at 1,600 pounds. There's no guarantee in life that this will or won't save me in a bad situation, but age is teaching me to at least set myself up for success instead of hoping "as is" works well enough, especially with my precious cargo aboard, let alone thinking of others' safety.
With a GVWR of almost 3,000 pounds, I would definitely look to see if there are the square mounting plates right next to the axle hubs that are for brakes. If they exist on your current axle, it is a fairly simple matter, DIY, to add them. If the mounting plates are not there, I would consider fixing that as well. A trailer/axle shop can resolve that.
Regardless, I would put brakes on - without a doubt.
Sounds like you had quite a good time. We're just starting to get back into camping as the summers around here are so oppressive with the humidity. We love fall camping and even into overnight lows in the 30s. I still sweated around the campfire last weekend.
Eventually, probably around Thanksgiving, we'll turn it in for the winter but we've been known to pull it out and just go water-free for a spontaneous weekender.
I would strongly suggest a new, recent model converter rather than trying to find anything like the original equipment.
Best Converter would be an excellent source for a new one. They have great pre- and post-sales support so don't be afraid to use the "Ask Randy" button anything.
My suggestion would be a WFCO model WF-8715 (15 amps) or WF-8725 (25 amps) for $100.
I replaced an Elixir 12 with a WF-8715 and really liked the upgrade to a three-stage smart charger.
Of course, more capacity for circuits and charging can be found in the WF-8935 but you're into $150 at that point.
My Jayco had not onboard storage options for the travel door, so I just leaned it against the rear bump with the "inside" of the door facing under the PUP so that if any rain and dirt splattered, it most hit the outside.
Occasionally, I left the travel door on but the screen door would hit it and caused a hole in the screening to develop. I stopped doing that right away and stored the door.
You may be new, here BB, but not to the world of PUPing.
I've seen a goodly number of front storage box rebuilds or even cutting off the rotting box and turning it into a cargo deck due to lid and weatherproofing failures leading to water damage. It would be nice to have one but I would take steps to ensure it stays dry, just as I did with my roof.
I would only recommend using brakes, never suggesting otherwise. I only wish I had put them on my "lightweight" PUP as I had a couple of close calls thanks to other folks not realizing what it takes to stop short.
It is a combination of adjusting the brake controller voltage AND the brake gap adjustment. If you are locking up the brakes with a relatively low voltage, then open up the adjustment on the brake a little.
In my current situation, I cannot get the brakes to lock up for anything. Of course, Prodigy says that can be the case and it is normal. I can most definitely tell that the trailer brakes work and work well.
Also look intently at the ceiling and the side walls of the roof for any bubbling of the vinyl cover, any signs of rot or water intrusion on the wood. Underneath whatever exterior covering is on the outside (typically aluminum or fiberglass of some sort) is usually plywood to make up the side walls of the roof. Check over all of that.
Look for water leaks around any plumbing under the sink and other water fixtures, including the pump and water heater.
Look for signs of mold in the corners, under the beds on the OSB/plywood bottoms, any place there is canvas/vinyl.
Walk on all areas of the floor and look for any place that gives. There will flexing and that is natural, but if something feels a bit squishy, check it out on the underside as well.
BTW, if you're not sensing it - water damage is often the biggest factor in longevity of PUPs.
Look for holes in the vinyl or canvas fabric.
Make sure all appliances work, demonstrated.
Overall condition and then some specifics to pay attention to. Tires are a commodity and need replacing every 4-5 years regardless of use. Brakes, if equipped need inspection. Bearings need greasing - when was the last time the seller did this?
Check the roof - is it sloping towards the middle, either front-to-back or side-to-side?
There's a host of other things to consider but you just have look at it closely and as best you can. Like I said, water is the most common failure reason of many aspects of a PUP.