We are known for being cheap and great with DIY. Camper living is no exception. This is our second winter in Colorado in a fifth wheel and we wanted our skirting to look great AND be reusable this year! Thus, our solution to DIY with vinyl.
This quick video shows how we skirted our camper and saved over $1,200! We received a quote from a local person who skirts campers for just over $2,500 and the online companies for the DIY kits were close to $2,000. We live on a budget and neither of those were an option! Jordan decided to try and source the materials individually and he found some great deals. All in, we were able to purchase all of the material for just under $800. This even included the $150 Press-N-Snap tool.
We ordered the vinyl from a company called Big Duck Canvas. I found them through a Google search and they seemed to have the best bang for the buck. This vinyl comes in a 61″ width and is sold by the yard. I ordered enough to have some extra in case we messed anything up. It comes on one continuous roll so you don’t have to worry about having to glue seams together. It can be all one piece, which is the way we did it. After having the vinyl in hand, we couldn’t have been more pleased. It was exactly what we were looking for and their customer service is also fantastic.
These came from Sailrite. This company does all things marine upholstery. The snaps I ordered were a bit pricey but since I have never dealt with this before I felt more comfortable ordering something that I knew would work for my application. Once again, order more than you need. It is better to have some extra then not enough. Plan on putting a snap every 6-10 inches around your rig. Obviously you will have some closer together around any curves or corners. I calculated how many I needed based on the above spacing and then added 20%. You can find the snaps I used here HERE. I have since found some cheaper ones through WalMart and other vendors like these ones HERE.
This tool is not cheap. It was almost 1/4 of our entire expense. YEP… If you can find one used, borrow one, or resell it after you’re finished, you can easily knock $100 off the overall cost! I purchased mine new for the low low price of about $150 on ebay. You can find cheaper smaller versions but for this job you want something that will be able to puncture through the vinyl. Best do some of those rubber ball squeezes for about a week before you do this project because it will give you a good forearm workout! Brooke tried her hand at one and quickly handed that job off.
This can be found at most hardware, general stores, or fabric stores. I ordered mine off of Ebay but there are a ton of places to get it. We used this to double up the width of the vinyl to skirt the fifthwheel overhang and for gluing our velcro access points.
We used the 2″ velcro to create access points to under our rig. We wanted to use the fifth wheel overhang for storage as well as under our slide. The velcro (HERE) we ordered came with adhesive on it. This was not enough to stick to the shiny side of the vinyl so we ended up having to use the vinyl cement to hold it on.
We used 1″ PVC Pipe as weight tubes. I capped one end of these, filled with sand, and then capped the other end. These were cut so that they would fit in our pass-through storage bay. We picked it up at the local hardware store and one close to you should have it too.
These are to secure the vinyl to the PVC pipe if you choose to weight down the bottom of your skirting. You will need to get the proper size depending the size of PVC pipe you go with. THESE are the clamps we went with and they will work if you choose to go with 1″ pipe.
RV Butyl Tape
This is the stuff we put on the back of the screw in part of the snap. It will help keep any water from entering your rig through your screw. You can also get the kids to help by allowing them to clean this up behind you. It’s got a similar texture to sticky tack and they couldn’t get enough of it. You can pick it up at your local trailer store or right HERE.
To quickly complete this project we suggest the following equipment…
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