Trio-12 Repairs / Parts / Replace

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Coreyross
Posts: 4
Joined: Wed May 13, 2020 6:23 am
Location: Lebanon, Tn

Good afternoon. Happy 4th! I have 3 Trio-12 houses that I have had for several years. The homes have the pully system to lower as needed. Some of my pullies are brittle and worn. My poles are beginning to sway and are slowing rusting from the interoir. My question is, do I replace the entire units or repair? My houses are in average condition with no real issues. I want to repair at the end of the season if possible if it the most cost-efficient thing to do. I would like to rebuild all three houses for next Spring with new poles, pullies and ropes. I would like to hear some thoughts and a good place for replacement parts. Best Regards and Thank you in advance! Corey Ross
Whippy
Posts: 616
Joined: Thu Jan 19, 2017 11:15 pm
Location: Plano, Texas
Martin Colony History: See Signature

Corey,

I obtained a Trio Wade from my neighbors house across the alley. The original homeowner from 3 owners ago put it up. So I moved it to my yard.

When I moved it, I did some refurbishing of it. Cleaned it up, replaced interior walls and exterior panels and so on. I put window screen pieces on all of the vent holes to prevent wasps from entering. Put on a new cable. My Wade has 6 compartments as the original owner had made that change.

So what I'm saying is that refurbishing the Wade was quite enjoyable and I would recommend doing it yourself. You'll get to know it inside and out if you don't already. Parts are easy to find.

I have a couple of threads with photos and details of some of the stuff I did. Search for them and have a look if you want. I think one of the threads is "acquired a trio" or something like that. I like to post pictures as they are more descriptive than my words ever can be.

Good luck to you.

Coolwhips
2016 - late to put up, many visitors
2017 - 1 pair, 3 fledged
2018- 2 pair, 12 fledged
2019 - 4 pair, 21 fledged
2020 - 15 pair, 67 fledged
4th Gen Martin Fan
Posts: 1487
Joined: Thu Jul 04, 2013 1:19 pm
Location: TN/Collierville
Martin Colony History: I have been exposed to purple martin sounds in utero when my mother went out to get my father away from his martin colony.
I played around the martin colony every summer and watched as my father maintained his colony. In the late 50's until the 70's he did not notice European Starlings in south Texas.
When old enough, I helped maintain his colony. My primary task was eliminating English House Sparrows with a 1956 Benjamin 317 .177 air rifle.
When I settled into my own home, I started my first colony with an original Trio Castle and Trio Grandpa. When I moved again, I did not put up any martin houses. Frustration with European Starlings in the Southeast US was overwhelming.
Found PMCA Forum and learned about modern enlarged compartments and SREHs.
Inherited my father's last martin house, a Trio Grandma, modified it to modern specifications and have had good results since then.

Corey,
As a long term fan of Trio/Nature House products, I vote for fixing your existing Trio housing.
Nature House, Inc. was the last manufacturer of Trio/Nature House products. The parent company, Erva Tool & Manufacturing Company of Chicago, IL, used to have a complete catalog of parts. Since the COVID-19 pandemic, they seem to have shut down the website for purchasing these parts. The PMCA Store used to have Trio pole systems and pole sections for sale. I presume their supply came from ERVA and PMCA cannot get Trio/Nature House parts.
The plastic pulleys were always a weak point of the Trio pulley system. I purchase metal replacement pulleys from either Home Depot or Lowe's. At Lowe's, these pulleys are listed as: "Prime-Line 1.5-in Steel Sliding Patio Door Roller and Axle Kit; Item #134676 Model #D 1766". These 1 1/2" steel patio sliding door ball bearing pulleys are a perfect, superior pulley compared to the original plastic pulley. Unfortunately Home Depot and Lowe's usually do not stock these parts in their store. You have to order them online and have them shipped to your store.
To replace the original plastic pulley, grind off the crimped over shaft and replace the shaft with a stainless steel 1/4" hex head bolt and nut. Next time you have to replace the pulleys, approximately 30 years later, the change will be easier.
As far as the pole system, which "Trio-12" house you are referring to - Trio Mini-Castle (TMC12) or Trio Grandpa (MSS12)?
Hopefully we can get the "Trio Jedi Knights" to respond to your post.
Last edited by 4th Gen Martin Fan on Sat Jul 04, 2020 10:23 am, edited 2 times in total.
Mark.
Firm believer in HOSP/EUST Control, Enlarged Compartments, SREHs, Pole Predator Guards, Owl/Hawk Guards, Mite/Parasite Control, Housing Insulation, and Vents for Compartment Cooling.
PMCA Member.
Coreyross
Posts: 4
Joined: Wed May 13, 2020 6:23 am
Location: Lebanon, Tn

Thank you guys for the advice and encouragement. I have the Trio Grandpas. All three if them have the pulley on top and two of them tie off while the third has a spring loaded mechanism (under the house) to hold tension on the house (in the up position).
Whippy, Ill go by Home Depot and start collecting items for the pulley system. Next will be pole replacements.
4th Gen Martin Fan
Posts: 1487
Joined: Thu Jul 04, 2013 1:19 pm
Location: TN/Collierville
Martin Colony History: I have been exposed to purple martin sounds in utero when my mother went out to get my father away from his martin colony.
I played around the martin colony every summer and watched as my father maintained his colony. In the late 50's until the 70's he did not notice European Starlings in south Texas.
When old enough, I helped maintain his colony. My primary task was eliminating English House Sparrows with a 1956 Benjamin 317 .177 air rifle.
When I settled into my own home, I started my first colony with an original Trio Castle and Trio Grandpa. When I moved again, I did not put up any martin houses. Frustration with European Starlings in the Southeast US was overwhelming.
Found PMCA Forum and learned about modern enlarged compartments and SREHs.
Inherited my father's last martin house, a Trio Grandma, modified it to modern specifications and have had good results since then.

Prime-Line Products 1 1/2" sliding door rollers are available through Amazon and eBay in various configurations. Generally the tandem roller configuration is a better deal, essentially two 1.5 inch steel rollers. Be aware though, the tandem roller configuration requires grinding off the crimped over shaft and the single rollers don't require that step.
The width of these pulleys are perfect for either the original rope and pulley operation or winch and cable operation (Trio Winch Conversion Kit).
If you ever convert your rope and pulley system with the Trio Winch Conversion Kit, you will never go back to the rope. The winch and cable system is easier, safer and with the winch and stainless steel wire rope, you won't have to replace anything for many years.
Most landlords get rid of the "lanyard lock" spring loaded mechanism under the house. How anyone can get that thing to work is beyond me. Some have implied that "safety system" was to bypass a lawsuit if the landlord dropped the house on their head. Your prerogative.
Mark.
Firm believer in HOSP/EUST Control, Enlarged Compartments, SREHs, Pole Predator Guards, Owl/Hawk Guards, Mite/Parasite Control, Housing Insulation, and Vents for Compartment Cooling.
PMCA Member.
Coreyross
Posts: 4
Joined: Wed May 13, 2020 6:23 am
Location: Lebanon, Tn

Thank you Mark. Yeah the lanyard lock is a bit cumbersome, I agree. I'll look into the winch conversion kits as well. Thanks again.
Coreyross
Posts: 4
Joined: Wed May 13, 2020 6:23 am
Location: Lebanon, Tn

Can you buy some type of generic poles at Home Depot or Lowes for replacements? I havent seen anything like that online. Looks like most replacements are 2 foot sections. Have a great Sunday!
4th Gen Martin Fan
Posts: 1487
Joined: Thu Jul 04, 2013 1:19 pm
Location: TN/Collierville
Martin Colony History: I have been exposed to purple martin sounds in utero when my mother went out to get my father away from his martin colony.
I played around the martin colony every summer and watched as my father maintained his colony. In the late 50's until the 70's he did not notice European Starlings in south Texas.
When old enough, I helped maintain his colony. My primary task was eliminating English House Sparrows with a 1956 Benjamin 317 .177 air rifle.
When I settled into my own home, I started my first colony with an original Trio Castle and Trio Grandpa. When I moved again, I did not put up any martin houses. Frustration with European Starlings in the Southeast US was overwhelming.
Found PMCA Forum and learned about modern enlarged compartments and SREHs.
Inherited my father's last martin house, a Trio Grandma, modified it to modern specifications and have had good results since then.

I do not know of a good replacement for a Trio Grandpa (MSS12) at this time. Currently, I spend more time refurbishing original Trio poles and/or strengthening them then working on the Trio houses.
The original Trio/Nature House pole sections were made of very thick steel with thick zinc coating to resist corrosion. The most susceptible section was the bottom section. If the bottom pole is mounted in concrete without gravel at the end to allow drainage of water, then water builds up inside the pole. Even the zinc coating inside the steel pipe cannot hold up against constant water. If that corrosion is not bad enough, then the water inside the pipe freezes during the winter. The pipe cannot withstand that pressure and will bulge. That bulge further weaken the bottom pole. If you see a Trio pole bent over 2-4 feet above the ground, you will know exactly what happened to that bottom pole.
Hopefully ERVA Tool and Manufacturing will resume production and shipments of Trio/Nature House replacement parts, including pole sections, after the COVID-19 pandemic is over.
Mark.
Firm believer in HOSP/EUST Control, Enlarged Compartments, SREHs, Pole Predator Guards, Owl/Hawk Guards, Mite/Parasite Control, Housing Insulation, and Vents for Compartment Cooling.
PMCA Member.
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