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Old 10-24-2009, 07:52 PM   #43
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Finished

And finally, it was done. Here's the black tank with the glassed on flange.

As I said earlier, it doesn't have to be pretty. We've spent a week drycamping in Maine and a 3 day weekend in Vermont and there were no leaks or odor issues.

I did have a little trouble sealing it the first time. Byamcaravanner helped me out with the idea of silicone.

Would I do it again? Probably not. I learned a good bit, but it took longer than expected. Cost was about $100. If you're thinking about this, consider buying the Inland RV tank and modifying the flange.

What would I do differently? Make it larger. It did improve my glassing skills, so that's always good.
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Old 10-24-2009, 07:57 PM   #44
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New Floor

Next step was a fresh paint job and a new floor. Nothing unusual, but made it start to look livable.
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Old 10-24-2009, 08:00 PM   #45
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Beautiful work!! And great idea on the black tank. Am finishing repairs this weekend (I hope I finish) on the top half of my fiberglass tank, then next week can finally get to the point of glassing a flange in. Nothing as elaborate as yours but very helpful to read!
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Old 10-24-2009, 08:01 PM   #46
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Finished Bath

If you look back at post 29, you'll see that the PO cut the bath in half. Here's how it looks back in place. We glassed it, especially strong behind and a single layer in front. Lots of sanding followed by paint.

We used INTERLUX Perfection Two-Part Polyurethane from West Marine. It's very thin and takes 2 coats. We're really happy with the finish. We've only camped in it twice, but I've used Interlux products on boats before and they last outdoors for years. (no affiliation with either company).
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Old 10-24-2009, 08:06 PM   #47
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More on the bath

Notice in the picture above that there is a temporary piece of plywood where the sink used to be. We're going to finish that off and use the space below for bedding during the day and the space above for counterspace. At this point, we will probably mount the catalytic heater on the back of the closet wall on a swing mount like Zep did. It should be safe from shower water if put back in position and behind a curtain.

See http://www.airforums.com/forums/f427...ion-46720.html

We're still struggling with where to put the heater. Comments are welcome!
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Old 10-24-2009, 08:09 PM   #48
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Rv500

We installed an RV500 and are very happy with it. The only drawback is that low flows of water don't trigger the flow sensor, so it won't come on. The pressure relief valve works very well. More on that later.

The old hot water heater(s) were larger, so we had to make a flange around 3 sides to get it to fit snugly. Here's the obligatory cleco pic.
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Old 10-24-2009, 08:18 PM   #49
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Time to camp!

After getting the black tank and fresh water tank, we slapped some temporary bedding in and went to the White Mountains for a week.

The sizes of the gaucho and dinette as well as closet walls were mocked up to size per the design above. We're within inches of the original.

Yes, the flexible vent hose went through the roof before we used the black tank! I have used flexible black tank plumbing on boats before from Raritan Engineering. In fact, I solved a nasty odor problem by replacing old lines with the stuff. It works and gives much more room in the closets.
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Old 10-24-2009, 08:19 PM   #50
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Good luck

Thanks, Scott and Megan.

Good Luck,

John
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Old 10-24-2009, 08:26 PM   #51
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Sometimes I wonder

I still don't know if it was worth it, but... I started a first cut.

In retrospect, it was, but it has me thinking about a little more. Not this year though!

We had multiple colors on the Caravel. A nice new panel, fairly good aluminum on the sides below still-effective clearcoat and male pattern baldness on the roof.

The first picture was two weekends before the last. The new awning needed to go on a more uniformly colored trailer.

We used Nuvite F-7 after stripping with Aircraft Stripper. I did get a cyclo for my birthday, but it's never been turned on.
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Old 10-24-2009, 08:39 PM   #52
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Ass-embling backwards

For motivation's sake, we needed to camp a few times during this restoration. We did so without the grey tank. It was a mistake putting this off -- installing it requires removing the axle.

The Caravel has only a 3" frame, so getting lots of storage is a challenge. We made plans for two symmetrical tanks and welded supports in anticipation. See post #15.

Since that time, Mike finished 17 weeks at Lincoln Electric and has over a year of welding experience, so he was ready for a challenge. We designed it as a single tank with room to flow below the framing. He had his work cut out for him.

Here's the drawing of the tank. If you plan to try this, I'd strongly suggest making all dimensions 1/2 to 1" shorter. There is some warpage of the stainless tank and I drew the dimensions too tight! Spent some time with the grinder. ;(
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Old 10-24-2009, 08:41 PM   #53
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Making the grey tank

Here's Mike welding the tank and the bottom being leak tested. Look Ma, no leaks!
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Old 10-24-2009, 08:56 PM   #54
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Grey tank installation

Here's the finished tank going under the trailer on a dolly. Then on it's way up into the cavity. Man, this is a lot of work!

So, all caught up on progress in one night of posting! We stopped here today when the rain hit. Hopefully, it will be bolted up tomorrow. I am hoping to get the wiring back up and the bellypan installed by November 2nd. I don't want to work outside in New England after that.
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Old 10-24-2009, 09:09 PM   #55
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Supporting the trailer

One thought on the previous picture. I didn't show how the trailer was supported while we worked beneath it. From that angle, it looks like the trailer was supported by the 6x6. It wasn't! Relying only on a vertical support like that is totally unsafe. Besides, that would be one of the worst places to support your airstream.

Before being willing to go below the trailer, we removed the wheel from the front jack stand and blocked the a-frame up front so that it couldn't move. The trailer was then supported by 2 sets of bottle jacks on either side at and forward of the axle. The pair of 6x6's are just there in case. They are the wheelie preventers. We set up the height so that they were about 1/16" below the back of the frame.
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Old 10-24-2009, 09:18 PM   #56
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did you spray your bath parts or was it a roll on product?
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